The San Francisco 49ers have made it very clear they want to get a contract extension done sooner rather than later with quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo. However, given the state of the market, Garoppolo and agent Don Yee might be plenty comfortable slow-playing this process.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter made an appearance on KNBR Thursday morning, and he had some intriguing thoughts on a now well-worn topic. Most notably, he talked about how Garoppolo and Yee are likely to wait and see how the quarterback market restructures itself. Washington quarterback Kirk Cousins is the most notable other quarterback who could potentially hit the market, but Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers is the truly intriguing player.
Rodgers is signed through 2019, having inked his second contract extension back in 2013. At the time he, he signed a five-year, $110 million deal that was tacked on to the end of the two years on his previous extension. Since then, numerous contracts have shot past his $22 million per year deal.
Schefter had this to say about Rodgers, Garoppolo, and the kind of number he could see for Jimmy G.
“The issue that you have here, I think, is that at some point this offseason, we may see a deal get done for Aaron Rodgers. And when those numbers come in, they’re going to be really high — really high.
“And so, if you’re the 49ers, you probably want to move quicker. And if you’re Jimmy Garoppolo, Jimmy GQ and Don Yee, I think you probably want to slow play this until these numbers come in because they’re only going to boost your value.
“But I think when push comes to shove, when this deal gets done, if I had to guess, I would guess it comes in between $25-30 million a year, depending on some of the variable factors.”
Chris Biderman put together a solid breakdown on how Garoppolo could end up the highest paid quarterback in the NFL, if briefly. He pointed to Mike Florio’s article in response to John Lynch talking up re-signing Garoppolo. Florio broke down what the exclusive and non-exclusive franchise tags could mean in terms of guaranteed money each of the next three years. Three years of the exclusive tag would pay out roughly $97.7 million. Three years of the non-exclusive tag would pay out roughly $90.3 million.
The only reason to use the non-exclusive tag would be to see what the market dictates for Garoppolo, albeit under the requirement of two first round picks in return. The 49ers would have the right to match any offer made to Garoppolo, and there is no concern about cap space.
Garoppolo is unlikely to get a deal that gives him $90+ million in guaranteed money. That being said, he could wind up with a sizable chunk of change fully guaranteed. Matthew Stafford got $60.5 million in his most recent contract, while Derek Carr got $40 million. Rodgers will be a contract to watch, but Kirk Cousins will be even more so if he does not end up playing a third straight year on the franchise tag. Garoppolo has a small sample size, but it all comes down to what the market dictates. And given the value of quarterbacks, I fully expect Garoppolo to get paaaaaaid.