No Discount Necessary: Rodgers Deserves to be Top Paid in NFL

Spare me.

I can already hear the debate and I’m not having any of it. When Aaron Rodgers signs the biggest contract in NFL history in the coming days or weeks, it will cause fans to bemoan and media jackals to wonder why Rodgers would strap his team with such salary cap restraints.

Look at what Tom Brady just did, they’ll remind us; he took less money so his team could build a Super Bowl-contending roster. My answer to that is this: Brady didn’t take any discount five years ago when he was Rodgers’ age. This is Rodgers’ payday and he deserves every penny.

When called on to take over in 2008, he faced more than the 22 Vikings players in his first start. At least half of the fans at Lambeau booed him that day. It would be the last time they would. Very quickly, we found out what we had: a historically great quarterback who not only would keep the Packers relevant as long as he was healthy, but also a guy who plays with a chip on his shoulder. He has since he was a kid. He still wears that chip, even with a Super Bowl MVP in his back pocket.

The Packers quickly tore up his deal and gave him a new one, one that has made him one of the great values in the NFL the last few years. It’s time for him to take his rightful place at the top of the salary pecking order, ahead of Flacco, Romo, Brees, Brady and Manning.

Let the number-crunchers figure out how to set it up so that there is sufficient cap room to pay the other players they want to keep. And we will have to presume Ted Thompson and his staff will continue to fill in around him and the other core guys, using the draft and adding a few undrafted free agent gems.

A 29-year-old QB with Aaron Rodgers’ resume should not be asked to take one for the team. He should be rewarded for his consistent greatness and should take his rightful place atop the NFL salary heap.


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7 Responses to No Discount Necessary: Rodgers Deserves to be Top Paid in NFL

  1. The Trashman says:

    I think you are being way too pessimistic, Dave. If Rodgers were threatening to hold out or giving us one of those “I got to feed my family” lines like Latrell Sprewell, then sure the fans would question the whole process and dollar amount. But Rodgers has never complained (publicly at least) and I think fans will be proud that we have the best QB in the NFL that has the highest contract ever (if only for a year or two). I think we all agree he deserves more than Flacco and around $23 mil a year sounds about right to everybody. I will be happy when it is done and we have him locked into a Green & Gold jersey for 6 more years. I just hope now that we have caught lightning in a bottle twice in a row with a HOF QB in Favre followed by Rodgers, we can get more than 2 superbowls out of our good fortune. San Fran managed to get 5 Superbowls (4 for Montana and 1 for Young) out of their back-to-back HOF QBs. I really hope the Rodgers era isn’t just another “fart in the wind” as Ron Wolf would say. Let’s get healthy! Imagine how good this team could be if our last three 1st rounders (Bulaga, Sherrod and Perry) all come back healthy and play like 1st rounders! Rodgers with protection, an O-line that can make some holes for our RBs, and somebody to finally pair up on the opposite side from the Claymaker? GO PACK!

  2. Bill, the voice of reason says:

    I’m envisioning this as a similar financial arrangement that the Packers had with #4 about 10 years ago or so (maybe longer…I do suffer from CRS!), so he’ll be in the fold for a long time to come. Now…I’ll nip this in the bud for our purple friends before any of them get all high and mighty making false claims how this will “destroy” the Packers’ salary cap, just keep in mind a couple of things: first, TT has anticipated this move, and has the finances structured in a manner where they will be able to handle this situation and some other pending ones coming up (IE: Matthews and Raji), and not extend into taking out a future mortgage like Jerry Jones did to pay Romo (which I predict is the beginning of the end for the Jerry Jones era in Dallas). Second, the Vikings have roughly $5M in cap room, which isn’t a whole lot to sign any additional free agents (unless they come really cheap), and the upcoming draft class this year. Maybe Speilman’s master plan isn’t quite working out like he hoped! He better hope that Jennings delivers, or this could be trouble somewhere down the line. I think he still could make it work, but the gears are starting to get a little squeaky. TT’s $18M looks a whole lot better than RS’s $5M. The plot thickens…

  3. Patrick says:

    100% agree. This is a business….it’s capitalism. I couldn’t believe the negative comments posted on a FB post by the Packers a few days ago about Rodgers getting paid. They complained about inequality around the world and such. Apples and oranges people. Yes, it’s terrible that there is suffering around the world. Yes, many people deserve better. But no, you can’t compare a Marine’s salary to an NFL players. Rodgers earns what the Packer’s are willing to pay. If $25MM, then $25MM. GO PACK!

  4. Korey in Richfield says:

    I totally Agree with you Dave. Rodgers deserves this pay day—-and deserves it big time. He has completely outplayed his last contract from 2008. Given what he’s been asked to do, post-Favre, he as been truly remarkable both on and off the field. Overall, us Packer fans have been QB spoiled. Going from Favre to Rodgers? That just doesn’t happen. If Rodgers can stay healthy, that will be almost 30 year of straight elite QB play in GB. Unheard of in the NFL. Rodgers has done everything and much, much more than Thompson and McCarthy and the entire Packer Organization have asked for. Rodgers is not just a great QB, he’s a great personal face of the franchise. His work with the MACC Fund is just one example of Rodger’s humble work in the Wisconsin community. Even though Rodgers is super competitive and driven, he’s also a goof ball. He doesn’t take everything so seriously. He’s got a great sense of humor and stands up for his teammates. Seriously, what else can the guy do to NOT be the highest paid NFL player of all time? Pay the man. The doubter will always doubt, but he clearly is the most deserving of this honor—-especially considering he’s only 29 and can play a LOT longer. Congrats to Rodgers. Well done sir!

  5. SchenySchen says:

    THis post is more appropriate for the previous article and discussion. I for one am quite content that we are sitting back during free agency. Getting Canty would have made me happy but I think DL is going to be pick one. — I am not sure where all the concern is on the OL. Yes, we gave up 55 sacks last year. Rodgers will always give up more than his share because he holds the ball. We have Bulaga and Sherrod coming back. That’s 2 first round OT’s folks. If Sherrod can’t play, Bulaga moves to LT and Barclay stays at RT. Lang/EDS/Sitton is more than adequate on the interior. EDS is a better C than he was at guard.– Remember what MM always says..”we look for players to improve the most from yr 1 to year 2″. I think because of that they will give Mcmillan every opportunity to win the job opposite Morgan Burnett. He has the physical tools to be a good SS. Just needs more time. — Nick Perry is another example of that. There is no way he can be worse than Walden was in the Niner game. His game will grow. The hit he put on Colts qb was a thing of beauty. — Essentially, even before the draft we have 3 1st round picks coming back to the team(bulaga/sherrod/perry). DL is the one place they don’t even have the bodies to compete. Expect Hankins or someone like that at #26. 2nd round WR as TT seems to like finding WR talent there and Montee Ball or Michael Christine in Rnd 3. — I am a big fan of us trading back, with someone like the Jags if we can get an early 2nd round pick and swap 3rds and pick up their 5th. More to come later. GoPack!

  6. Don Barcome, Jr. says:

    I wonder if a guy like Aaron Rodgers (Or Clay Mathews for that matter), thinks about the difference of making say $25M/year and taking about $10M/year away from signing better position players? It seams to me, he could make as much (maybe more?) by having a higher-talented team & winning a couple more Super Bowls. Supper Bowl rings mean advertising dollars, and major dollars in be could lead a team to 2-3 more of them over the next 5-7 years. There are big differences T every position if you can afford another $2-3M peer player. Also, your backups/Special Teams will have higher talent levels & that’s where games can be won, or lost. Totally agree that both AR & CM are at the top level of NFL talent, but without other above average or Pro Bowl level players on the squad, winning becomes very allusive!

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