It seems like not very long ago, the Ravens organization was being relentlessly mocked for signing their Super Bowl MVP Quarterback, Joe Flacco, to a $120 million contract, the largest QB contract ever at the time.
Well the haters aren't laughing anymore.
Following last week's extension of the Seahawks' franchise quarterback Russell Wilson, Flacco is now the sixth-highest paid QB in the league.
Wilson's deal makes him the second-highest paid QB in the league, behind only Aaron Rodgers. Wilson is receiving $87.6 million over four years, for an annual average salary of $21.9 million. His guaranteed portion of the contract is 36.2%, or $7.925 a year. This in stark comparison to Flacco, whose $4.8 million average in guaranteed money is only 24.0% of his contract. Of the eight highest-paid quarterbacks, Flacco has the least guaranteed money percentage.
The true meat and potatoes of contracts is the guaranteed portion. While the definition of 'guaranteed money' can vary based on the language of the contract, it is normally money that is owed to players even if they are released, injured, or traded.
While Russell's enormous contract is well deserved, as he has led his Seahawks to a Super Bowl appearance two times in just three of his seasons, it also proves that the Ravens were well in front of the curve when it came to signing their franchise quarterback. With those kinds of quarterbacks a rare breed, teams are realizing that they need to shell out more than ever before to retain their quaterbacks' services. As more and more young quarterbacks get their second contracts, expect Flacco's positioning on this list to fall even further.