By Dayna O’Gorman // @DaynaOG
NFL quarterbacks are always a hot topic. Overrated. Underrated. Overpaid. Underpaid. Elite. Not Elite. Top five lists. Quarterbacks are often the cause of a lot of arguments and constant comparisons to fans.
With Dallas Cowboys QB Dak Prescott signing his tag, and nowhere near a new contract, and Kansas City Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes scheduled to break the bank with his new contract, I decided to ask the fan forum how they felt about quarterbacks. Is their favorite team’s QB worth it? Do they feel quarterbacks are overhyped or undervalued? Here is how a few of them felt.
Derrick’s favorite team, the New England Patriots, are in their first season without a definite franchise QB in 20 years.
“The QB on my team is in his 2nd year in the league. Since he was a 4th rounder, he isn’t causing a dent in our salary cap. The QB position is important because, besides the center, the QB has the ball 100% of the snaps regardless of he’s passing it, scrambling, or handing it off to the RB.”
“I think the salary cap should be increased so that the QB should be compensated properly. The market has dictated that. There have been plenty of QBs that never won a playoff game that is paid but again, they hold the ball 100% of the time on all offensive possessions.”
In my opinion, New England would be smart to look to a vet QB (ahem, Cam Newton) to help get over the gap after the Brady years.
Brian, being a Kansas City Chiefs fan, knows the importance of a franchise QB.
“Would the Patriots dynasty have existed without Tom Brady? No. Would KC have won this year without Patrick Mahomes? No. Elway, Montana, Manning, (and for Dayna) Wilson. All franchise quarterback whose teams would not have done what they did without then. So yes, certain QBs are definitely worth larger percentages of the cap space. Not all, but some.”
“The QB is usually the face of the franchise, both in the good times and the bad. With a few notable exceptions, they handle the ball every offensive possession. They don’t always get credit for a win, but they are usually the ones blamed for a loss.”
“So a large percentage seems reasonable, allowing for enough cap space for other skilled players around a true franchise QB.”
Yes, I am a Wilson fan. Most of you already know this. And speaking of Wilson…
“QB contracts are always up for debate. Players can look like a sure thing on a final year with one team, a reasonable risk for a new team looking for their missing piece, and yet fall quickly to earth with that new team after getting big money. Nothing can get a fan base worked up more than missing on a QB and overpaying him, to boot.”
“Russell Wilson is currently the highest-paid QB in the NFL, and since NFL salaries resemble Monopoly money, it’s easy to get jaded about who is worth what mega-contract. Having written that, I can’t imagine not having Wilson on the Seahawks.”
“His presence on the team has elevated so-so/rebuilding squads into the playoffs. Any fan appreciates that because we know franchises where recent playoff appearances have been few or none. There’s a reason for the saying “As long as Wilson is playing, we have a chance.” He’s a huge part of the Seahawk’s recent successes and certainly, his QB play keeps us competitive in arguably the toughest division in the game. I think he’s worth the big payout as I see him as a franchise QB with consistency, a difference-maker and natural leader for the team, and in his prime.”
And that brings us to Son_Dee, our Los Angeles Rams fan. Rams QB Jared Goff has been a point of constant conversation ever since he received his latest contract, and Son_Dee has a lot to say about it.
“Well, this is unfair considering Jared Goff became one of the highest-paid QB in the NFL in 2019. This is hard to unpack. The Rams leveraged Goff’s rookie contract to add talent, which led to two NFC West Championships, two playoff appearances, and a Super Bowl appearance before Goff signed his deal in the 2019 offseason. Of course, 2019 was a disappointing season where the Rams narrowly missed the playoffs, had to unload a few players (Gurley and Cooks) due to cap reasons and were limited in free agency.”
“Yes, Goff’s massive contract has impacted the Rams. And I can’t find anything in the new CBA that will change franchise QBs taking up the majority of cap space for NFL teams. Still, Snead and other GMs have shown, the NFL cap isn’t as hard as it seems. So the debate continues. Is Goff overpaid or underpaid? That’s as divisive debate as “one properly called PI in the Superbowl and Goff is a Superbowl winning QB” argument. Sure, sure “ifs’ and buts’” and all, but Brady didn’t vastly outplay Goff in that Superbowl. A few plays here or there and this is an entirely different debate if Goff has a Super Bowl ring. He doesn’t. So the debate continues.”
“Is Goff overpaid or underpaid? Currently, he’s overpaid since he ranks so high in QB salary, APY, and guaranteed rankings without a ring. But he was also one of the last big QBs signed, and that’s the issue we’re dealing with here. QB contracts are based more on who signed when than meritocracy. Once Watson, Dak, Mahomes, Lamar, etc sign their deal suddenly Goff’s contract won’t look so bad. Factor in the annual increase in the overall cap and the percentage of Goff’s contract is less and less an impact per year. So the debate continues. Want my answer to the question of is Goff overpaid or underpaid – ask me again in a few years.”
And that’s fair. So many contracts come under scrutiny right after they are done, but often in just a year or two, people no longer question them.
For the most part, quarterbacks are the most important players on the field. And as a defense lover, that is hard for me to say. But there is no doubt that elite, average, or below average, QBs will continue to receive a large chunk of cap space.
Follow Dayna on Twitter // @DaynaOG