Recent Contract Forecasts & Projections

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June 5th, 2014 by Michael Ginnitti

The NFL offseason isn’t just a time for free agent signings, newly acquired draft picks, and team re-building, but it’s a time for current players to sit back and assess their current financial situation. For many players entering contract years, the name of the game is the long-term extension. For veterans with near-expiring contracts, the name of the game is more upfront cash. In either case, we’ve placed a number of current NFL players into our forecast formula to project their current worth in terms of a new or extended contract.

 

Players Not Yet Signed

 

Michael Crabtree, WR, 49ers

The former #10 overall selection in the 2009 draft is about to enter his contract year in San Francisco, but has yet to bring his statistical production up to the likes of DeSean Jackson, Mike Wallace, or even Pierre Garcon prior to their signings.

Estimated Projection: 5 years, $45 million; $13.6M guaranteed.

 

J.J. Watt, DE, Texans

With three seasons now in the books, Houston Texans’ defensive end J.J. Watt has risen to the top of his position in dominating fashion. A great rookie season in 2011 (7 sacks, 42 tackles, 40 stops) has been nearly doubled in back to back seasons. The sky is limit for Watt financially, and the leg work we’ve done simply projects his “base value” as of now.

Estimated Projection: 6 years, $142.2 million; $55.6M guaranteed.

 

Andy Dalton, QB, Bengals

Dalton has posted a 29-18 record as the Bengals’ starter, leading them to three consecutive playoff appearances. But inconsistent play at times, and no “wow” moment to hang his hat on has kept many skeptical.

Estimated Projection: 5 years, $94 million; $31.8M guaranteed.

 

Alex Smith, QB, Chiefs

The former 49ers quarterback may not be quite in the Colin Kaepernick range, but statistically he held up well against the likes of Romo, E. Manning, Cutler, and Schaub. The Chiefs still don’t appear eager to make this deal a long-term one, but what long-term deal is actually long-term in this day anyway? Estimated Projection: 5 years, $78 million; $24M guaranteed.

 

Patrick Peterson, CB, Cardinals

Patrick Peterson believes he’s the best in the business, and in terms of our statistical comparisons, he’s got a point, as the 23 year old basically washed when assessed against Revis, Sherman, Carr, J. Joseph, and B. Flowers. He’ll demand more, but his current value estimates out at:

Estimated Projection: 5 years, $52 million; $28.5M guaranteed.

 

Dez Bryant, WR, Cowboys

Dez is the first WR we’ve evaluated that didn’t produce a negative statistical prime percentage when including Calvin Johnson’s all-world statistics. He holds up with the best (Calvin, Larry, Andre, & Mike Wallace(?)), and has progressed each year on an up and down Dallas offense. The Cowboys will need to be creative to fit this in:

Estimated Projection: 5 years, $70 million; $22.1M guaranteed.

 

C.J. Spiller, RB, Bills

Add in recurring injuries and an in/out role in the offense for three seasons to an already de-valued position, and the financial future for Spiller may not be as bright as anticipated. He’s likely in line for Reggie Bush’s latest deal.

Estimated Projection: 3 years, $12.1 million; $3M guaranteed.

 

Vernon Davis, TE, 49ers

The 30 year old tight end is a major weapon for the 49ers offense, but doesn’t quite have the role statistically that some of the recently signed TEs do (Witten, Gates). He’s already paid well in terms of average salary, so the name of this game is upfront cash.

Estimated Projection: 3 years, $19 million; $10.2M guaranteed.

 

Jordy Nelson, WR, Packers

He’s been underpaid for years in Green Bay, and it appears the big contract is forthcoming. Nelson held up well statistically against former teammate Greg Jennings, Vincent Jackson, Dwayne Bowe, and Brandon Marshall. The Packers have been reluctant to pay well for pass-catchers, but it’s likely this one gets done (soon).

Estimated Projection: 4 years, $44 million; $21.5M guaranteed.

 

Players Who Have Signed

 

Colin Kaepernick, QB, 49ers

It took a little longer than expected, but the Niners locked in their franchise QB in their typical “pay-as-you-go” format. It’s a deal that opens the eyes at first glance, but actually settles right into a good value when broken down.

Spotrac’s Projection: 6 years, $118.4 million; $44M guaranteed.49ers’ Contract: 6 years, $126 million; $61M guaranteed.

 

DeSean Jackson, WR, Redskins

The former Eagle was run out of town this spring, and quickly found a new home with division-rival Redskins.

Spotrac’s Projection: 5 years, $48.2 million; $15M guaranteed.Redskins’ Contract: 4 years, $32 million; $16M guaranteed.

 

Eric Decker, WR, Jets

The former Bronco was allowed to test the market this March, and the Jets wasted no time making him their new goto target, at a pretty decent value based on our projection.

Spotrac’s Projection: 5 years, $57.4 million; $18.4M guaranteed.
Jets’ Contract: 5 years, $36.25 million; $15M guaranteed.

 

Richard Sherman, CB, Seahawks

The former Bronco was allowed to test the market this March, and the Jets wasted no time making him their new goto target, at a pretty decent value based on our projection.

Spotrac’s Projection: 6 years, $92.7 million; $49M guaranteed.
Seahawks’ Contract: 4 years, $56 million; $40M guaranteed.

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