Packers reward Aaron Rodgers with monster extension

Another month, another record-breaking NFL player contract.

This time for Aaron Rodgers.

Reports on Wednesday afternoon said the Green Bay Packers have rewarded their star quarterback with a monster four-year contract extension.

NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport said the new deal is worth $134 million, with a $57.5-million signing bonus and more than $80 million due to be paid to Rodgers by next March.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter tweeted that, with incentives thrown in, the extension could become worth between $176 million and $180 million, with $103 million “practically guaranteed.”

Rodgers still has two years remaining on the five-year, $110-million extension he signed in 2013, for the seasons 2015-19. That deal will pay him annual salaries of $20.6 million this season and $21.1 million in 2019, and upon signing made Rodgers the highest-paid passer in the NFL with an average salary of $22 million.

The new extension covers the years 2020-23 and has an average salary of $33.5 million, which eclipses the NFL-leading $30-million average salary that Atlanta Falcons QB Matt Ryan got in new money in his extension in May … which had eclipsed the $28-million average salary QB Kirk Cousins got as a free-agent signee with the Minnesota Vikings in March … which had eclipsed the $27.5-million average salary QB Jimmy Garoppolo got in his new deal with the San Francisco 49ers in February … which had eclipsed the $27-million average salary the Detroit Lions rewarded Matthew Stafford with last August … which had eclipsed the $25-million average salary Derek Carr got a year ago June in his contract extension with the Oakland Raiders.

Got all that? Good. Times sure are good to be a good NFL passer.

Rodgers’ re-signing means that all top NFL QBs who had current contracts ending before decade’s ends now are locked up for the near future, that is unless Pittsburgh’s Ben Roethlisberger wants to commit to playing beyond next year. The 36-year-old is under contract for two more seasons, at $23.2 million per. He has hinted strongly over the past couple of years he’s close to retiring.

Look, if any NFL quarterback is worth gargantuan pay, it’s Rodgers. We maintain the two-time NFL MVP is the best thrower of footballs this planet has yet produced. Watching him complete two Hail Mary heaves covering 96 yards in the final minute of a playoff game at Arizona, to send it to overtime, was the final proof I’ll ever need.

Before Tom Brady’s or Joe Montana’s fans jump down our throat, note that the above judgment is purely on throwing footballs, not the whole quarterbacking package. Different thing; in that aspect, Montana probably was pre-eminent until Brady came along.

Rodgers’ stats might not be crazy prolific like other top passers this century. But get this: ESPN’s Stats & Info dept tweeted that the 34-year-old could throw picks on his next 24 regular-season attempts and STILL own the NFL’s highest ever TD-to-interception ratio, which currently is 4-to-1.

Similarly, his 122.5 passer rating in 2011 is a record that might never be surpassed.

The native of Chico, Calif., would turn 40 late in the final season of his next extension, in December 2023.

Six more years of Aaron Rodgers? Yes, please.

KENDRICKS CHARGED

In another bombshell news story out of Cleveland, Browns linebacker Mychal Kendricks on Wednesday admitted he has been caught insider trading and intends to plead guilty to it.

Reports said the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania announced that Kendricks and co-defendant Damilare Sonoiki have been charged with one count of conspiracy to commit securities fraud, and another count of securities fraud.

The Browns reportedly were blindsided by the news. His status with the club was not immediately revealed, other than the fact he won’t travel to Detroit for Thursday night pre-season finale.

Kendricks, a former Philadelphia Eagle, released a statement, which said in part:

“Four years ago, I participated in insider trading, and I deeply regret it. I invested money with a former friend of mine who I thought I could trust and who I greatly admired. His background as a Harvard graduate and an employee of Goldman Sachs gave me a false sense of confidence.

“To this point, I had worked my tail off since I was five years old to become a football player … While I didn’t fully understand all of the details of the illegal trades, I knew it was wrong, and I wholeheartedly regret my actions.”

Kendricks added that he has “fully cooperated” with government investigators, and that while he “did not take any of the profits for myself, I am committed to repaying all of the funds gained illegally, and accept the consequences of my actions.”

While the NFL has no statute or by-law that specifically addresses penalties for financial crimes a league employee might commit, ProFootballTalk.com’s Mike Florio reported that unlike with crimes of violence, or drug use, the league “has no instantly available procedure for yanking a player away from the fray while still paying him, until the criminal process and/or the league’s internal procedures have resolved.”

HUNDLEY A SEAHAWK

The Packers on Wednesday made another transaction involving a quarterback. According to NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero they traded backup Brett Hundley to Seattle, for a 2019 sixth-round draft pick. Cleveland Browns castoff DeShone Kizer presumably will serves as Rodgers’ principal backup.

PRE-SEASON WRAPS

A reminder that all 32 teams are in action Thursday night, when the final pre-season games are played. You might not even need your toes to count the total number of important starters who’ll play at all. Teams must cut down from 90-man training camp rosters to 53 for the regular season by Saturday at 4 p.m. ET. Those waived can be claimed starting noon ET on Sunday, and teams can start filling their 10-man practice squads that afternoon.

Source:: Toronto Sun – Movies