NFL Quarterbacks Current & Future Contract Statuses

A detailed look at each team’s QB depth, including current financials, and contract statuses looking ahead to next offseason.

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Arizona Cardinals

Carson Palmer will be 38 at the completion of the 2017 season and will likely be contemplating, if not leaning toward, retirement. He’ll be looking at a $14M salary for 2018, with a cap figure of $20.625M. Should he walk away, or the Cardinals decide to release him, he’ll leave $6.625M in dead cap behind, clearing $14M.

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Drew Stanton is now 33 years old and his 2 year contract in Arizona will expire after the 2017 season. Arizona signed Blaine Gabbert to a 1 year veteran minimum deal this offseason and undrafted free agent Trevor Knight out of Texas A&M as well. Arizona doesn’t appear to have a firm replacement inline for Palmer just yet.


Atlanta Falcons

Coming off a Super Bowl appearance,  32 year old Matt Ryan has 2 years & $35M remaining on his current deal in Atlanta ($0 guaranteed). He holds just $2.4M dead cap in 2018, which will carry through to an extension he’s almost certain to sign in the next 18 months.

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Matt Schaub signed a respectable 2 year deal to serve as Ryan’s backup through 2018, while Matt Simms and undrafted free agent Alex Torgersen (Penn) will compete for the 3rd spot.


Baltimore Ravens

Baltimore locked in Joe Flacco to an extension through 2021 last offseason which structurally keeps him logically untouchable until after the 2019 season. He holds $28.75M in dead cap after 2017, and carries cap figure of $24.55M, $24.75M, and $26.5M over the next 3 seasons.

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The Ravens welcomed back Ryan Mallett on a 1 year $2M deal this offseason and tendered UDFA Dustin Vaughan at the $540,000 minimum. Baltimore holds very little depth behind Flacco.


Buffalo Bills

The Bills saw plenty of turnover across their organization, but opted to keep 27 year old Tyrod Taylor in-house via a hefty restructure to his previously penned long-term extension. Taylor holds a modest $9.7M cap figure in 2017 that increases to $18.08M in 2018. Buffalo can walk away before the 3rd league day of 2018 for an $8.64M dead cap hit.

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Despite a trade up into the 4th round in 2016 to select Cardale Jones, the Bills added two strong backup options this offseason. 30 year old T.J. Yates joins Buffalo on a veteran minimum salary ($40,000 guaranteed), while Nathan Peterman (Pitt) was drafted in the 5th round this past May. All three will be competing for the #2 role in 2017.


Carolina Panthers

Cam Newton & the Panthers will look to bounce back from a miserable 2016. The 28 year old enters year 3 of his 6 year contract, carrying a cap hit just north of $20.1M. With $15M in dead cap slotted for 2018, his position is fixed for at least 1 more season in Carolina.

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Long-time backup Derek Anderson (34) is entering the final year of his 3 year contract in Carolina as is the versatile Joe Webb on his 2 year pact. Camp-body Garrett Gilbert signed a minimum tender this spring to round out the depth, none of whom are signed past 2017 at this point.


Chicago Bears

Easily the most interesting team in terms of starting QB this offseason, the Bears made a splash in free agency handing Mike Glennon $18.5M in guarantees  (all in 2017), then followed that up with a trade up for Mitchell Trubisky at #2 overall, which holds $29M guaranteed across 4 seasons. Outside of a trade, Trubisky’s fully guaranteed contract means he goes nowhere anytime soon, while Glennon can be released prior to the 3rd league day of 2018 for a tolerable $4.5M dead cap hit.

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While Trubisky is the likely #2 out of the gate, the Bears also signed Mark Sanchez to a 1 year pact this March, and may opt to use him ahead of their 1st round draft pick for the upcoming season. Connor Shaw holds a minimum tender for 2017 and will likely be released out of camp.


Cincinnati Bengals

While Andy Dalton has 4 more years on his current deal, this can be considered a “contract year” for all intents and purposes. Dalton holds just $2.4M in dead cap after 2017 ($13.9M savings), making moving on from him very doable if necessary. The 29-year old will count a team friendly $15.7M against the cap this season.

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A.J. McCarron has drawn interest every year since the Bengals drafted him in the 5th round back in 2014, but he appears poised to play out the final year of his rookie pact in Cincinnati, when he’ll be eligible for restricted free agency (arm injury in 2014 essentially “red-shirted” the season). Should all stay well with Dalton, McCarron’s trade value will remain high after 2017.  The Bengals claimed Jeff Driskel from the 49ers last season and will likely keep him on board as the #3 in 2017.


Cleveland Browns

Nothing says July quite like the Browns and a QB controversy. After “buying” Brock Osweiler from the Texans last March, Cleveland drafted DeShone Kizer in the 2nd round this May to compete with Cody Kessler (3rd round, 2016), and Kevin Hogan (5th round, 2016). While Osweiler has a bit of experience (?) under his belt to go with a $16M fully guaranteed salary/cap figure, Kizer & Kessler appear to be getting all the chances in the world to win the spot this offseason.

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The Browns can walk away from Osweiler’s $18M salary/cap hit in 2018 with no dead cap. All others hold small, manageable dead cap figures after 2017: Kizer ($1.9M), Kessler ($332k), Hogan (ERFA).


Dallas Cowboys

The Cowboys have 5 QBs currently under contract for a combined $2.795M in 2017 cap; nearly a quarter of the $10.7M dead cap hit they’re taking on for the release of Tony Romo this offseason. All signs point to Dak Prescott ($635,848) remaining one of the best values in football, and his rookie contract runs through the 2019 season.

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Kellen Moore returns on a veteran minimum salary ($615,000 cap hit), while Zac Dysert enters the fold off waivers from Arizona ($615,000). UDFAs Jameill Showers and Cooper Rush round out the camp bodies as potential practice squad targets. All lines run through Prescott for the foreseeable future.


Denver Broncos

The QB1 role in Denver appears very much up in the air as camp nears, with both Trevor Siemian & Paxton Lynch vying for the role. Siemian enters year 3 of his 7th round rookie deal ($628,195 cap) and can be released/traded for just $13,198 after 2017. Lynch’s 1st round contract holds much more weight ($2,153,704 2017 cap, $4.4M dead cap after 2017).

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Denver used the final pick in the May draft to select Chad Kelly out of Ole Miss. When he’s healthy, he has a legitimate chance to compete for at least a backup role going forward. UDFA Kyle Sloter (Northern Colorado) rounds out the depth chart.


Detroit Lions

All eyes should be on Matthew Stafford in the coming days, as reports are swirling that the 29 year old is close to finalizing a major long-term extension in Detroit (likely the highest average contract in history). For now he enters the final year of his contract, carrying a $22M cap figure and $5.5M of dead cap (the latter of which will carry through to the new deal).

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The Lions selected Brad Kaaya (Miami) this year in the 6th round to compete for the backup role, while Jake Rudock (6th round, 2016) has been a camp/practice squad body, and will likely remain as such this season. Detroit has also reportedly signed back long-time reserve Dan Orlovsky (likely to a veteran minimum contract) to stabilize the depth chart behind Stafford.


Green Bay Packers

Aaron Rodgers returned to his HOF form in 2016, and for all intents and purposes will be entering a “contract year” in Green Bay in 2017. He holds a $20.3M cap figure this season, but carries $0 in dead cap going forward. The Packers may look to lock him up with a new deal prior to the upcoming season.

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Brett Hundley (5th round, 2015) appears poised to hold down the backup role behind Rodgers. He’s signed through 2018 at near minimum costs. Joe Callahan (minimum tender), and UDFA Taysom Hill will compete for the #3 role this summer.


Houston Texans

With the Brock Osweiler era gone before it really started, the QB1 role in Houston is in a bit of flux. All signs point to Tom Savage (4th round, 2014) winning the role for now. He’s entering a contract year with a value $765,146 cap figure to go with it.

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The Texans made a splash when they selected Deshaun Watson #12 overall this May. His $13.8M contract comes fully guaranteed, and locks him in as the “future starter” should all go well. Brandon Weeden returns for the final year of his 2 year contract on a friendly $1.62M cap figure ($0 dead cap). These three QBs account for just $4,909,106 in 2017 cap, while Houston will also carry $9M in dead cap from the trade of Osweiler to Cleveland.


Indianapolis Colts

With Andrew Luck‘s contract out of the way, the focus turns to his health, which appears to still be very much in question as August nears. Contractually, Luck is “locked in” through 2018 from his $32M signing bonus. Should things turn, the Colts would be able to get out of this deal prior to the 5th league day of 2019 with a $12.8M dead cap hit ($14.724M savings). For now, Luck will carry a tenable $19.4M cap hit for the upcoming 2017 season.

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Scott Tolzien left Green Bay to sign a 2 year pact in Indy last March and is an important piece with Luck’s stability in question. He holds a $2M cap figure and $250,000 in dead cap through 2017. Behind him, UDFAs Phillip Walker and Stephen Morris hold minimum tenders for the next few seasons.


Jacksonville Jaguars

The Jaguars made the decision to exercise Blake Bortles‘ 5th year option for 2018 (which doesn’t guarantee until the 1st league day of 2018), showing some renewed faith in the 2014 #3 overall selection. His $6.5M cap figure for 2017 is fully guaranteed, while his 5th year option next year is set to come in around $19M. He’s both an extension and trade/release candidate for the next few months.

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Chad Henne has proven to be a formidable backup since 2012, and signed a healthy $3.25M restructured deal to stay as such for 2017. Brandon Allen (6th round, 2016) is the lone QB behind Bortles and Henne for now.


Kansas City Chiefs

There have been less-strange times in KC to say the least. The Chiefs traded up to select Patrick Mahomes (#10 overall) this May putting current QB1 Alex Smith on immediate notice. While all signs point to Smith keeping the role in 2017, his status after is a toss up. The Chiefs can release/trade Smith after prior to the 3rd league day of 2018 for just $3.6M in dead cap.

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Mahomes and his $16.4M fully guaranteed contract will be competing from the get-go, as KC has Tyler Bray ($1.3M, $0 dead cap) under contract for 1 more year, and UDFA Joel Stave on a minimum tender.


Los Angeles Chargers

New city, same fearless leader. Philip Rivers enters year 3 of his 5 year contract carrying a $20M cap figure. The Chargers could conceivably manage to get out of the 35-year-old’s deal prior to 2018, but would take on a $12M dead cap hit by doing so.

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34-year-old Kellen Clemens returns on a 1 year veteran minimum deal ($80,000 guaranteed) to backup Rivers. While UDFAs Mike Bercovici & Eli Jenkins round out the depth chart. The Chargers will be in need of a long-term solution very soon.


Los Angeles Rams

Jared Goff will take the reigns for his first full season, carrying a $6.3M cap figure and a fully guaranteed contract through 2019 (with a 5th-year option available for 2020). Barring an RG3-type disaster, he’s fairly locked in per his deal.

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Sean Mannion (3rd round, 2015) enters year three of his rookie contract as the clear-cut backup. He holds cap figures of $886,486 and $1,034,228 through 2018, and a $156,450 dead cap hit after 2017. Look for the Rams to add a QB in the coming days.


Miami Dolphins

Ryan Tannehill is now the 15th highest average paid QB in football, and for all intents is entering a “contract year” with the Dolphins. He holds a $20.3M cap figure for 2017, but Miami can walk away from this deal prior to the 5th league day of 2018 with just $4.6M in dead cap accrued. It’s a big year for the 28 year old.

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Matt Moore returns on the final year ($2.15M) of his 2 year deal to backup Tannehill, while David Fales ($690,000) & UDFA Brandon Doughty will compete for the #3 role.


Minnesota Vikings

Sam Bradford proved to be a worthy replacement for the injured Teddy Bridgewater, and figures to keep the reigns heading into 2017, the final year of his contract. He’ll carry an $18M cap figure, and is a notable extension candidate based on the progress of Bridgewater’s recovery.

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A healthy Teddy Bridgewater is a heck of a backup option for Minnesota, and his $2.1M cap figure doesn’t break the bank much either. Trading him will clear $1.3M of that should the situation arise. The Vikings brought in Case Keenum on a 1 year free agent deal this March including $1M guaranteed, while Taylor Heinicke ($618,334), and Wes Lunt ($466,666) round out the depth chart.


New England Patriots

39-year-old Tom Brady returns to defend his title. He holds cap hits of $14M, $22M, & $22M through 2019, and dead cap hits of $28M, $14M, and $7M respectively. His future after 2017 will be something to watch.

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Speaking of futures after 2017, Jimmy Garoppolo ($1,108,513) enters the final year of his rookie contract and will continue to be amidst trade/extension rumors for the coming months. Jacoby Brissett (3rd round, 2016) enters year and has no competition for the #3 spot at this point.


New Orleans Saints

38-year-old Drew Brees signed a 1 year extension with the Saints last September and appears poised to play out that final year in 2017. It carries a $19M cap figure, and comes with an automatic void following the season that includes $18M in dead cap for the 2018 season. It remains to be seen if the Saints decide to negotiate an extension to keep Brees in the fold (and spread that dead cap out).

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The Eagles are paying Chase Daniel $4.1M not to play for them in 2017, while the Saints owe him just $900,000 ($615,000 cap figure). He’ll compete with Garrett Grayson ($540,000), & Ryan Nassib ($615,000) for the backup role behind Brees.


New York Giants

Eli Manning enters the final “financially safe” year of his contract in 2017, as the Giants will be able to clear almost $10M by releasing him before 3rd league day of the 2018 season. He holds a $19.7M cap figure in 2017.

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The battle for the backup comes down to Geno Smith ($1M), Josh Johnson ($1.01M), and Davis Webb (3rd round, 2017). One of the first two will certainly be a camp cut.


New York Jets

Josh McCown was awarded the role of leading the Jets through their apparent rebuild. The 38-year old’s $6M salary for 2017 is fully guaranteed.

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The battle between Bryce Petty (4th round, 2015), and Christian Hackenberg (2nd round, 2016) for the backup role and potential future QB1 spot will be one to watch. Hackenberg has seen limited action, while Petty was knocked around in his recent opportunities. The Jets can clear $661,832 by releasing Hackenberg,  $615,000 by cutting Petty.


Oakland Raiders

Derek Carr‘s recent extension raised his 2017 cap figure from $1.7M to $15.5M, and guaranteed $40M over the next 2 seasons. As it stands, the Raiders can treat this like a 2 year contract, as they’ll be able to release Carr after 2018 for just a $7.5M dead cap hit (though a likely restructure of a $15M roster bonus next season could add to that).

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Behind Carr the Raiders carry Connor Cook (4th round , 2016) and former Bills 1st round pick E.J. Manuel. Manuel can be let go for just his $25,000 workout bonus, clearing $775,000. Cook is signed through 2019, and would clear $540,000 if released before 2017, or $320,000 next year.


Philadelphia Eagles

With Sam Bradford traded to Minnesota, and Chase Daniel since released, Carson Wentz will enter year two of his rookie deal as the unquestioned QB1 in Philly. He holds cap hits of $6M, $7.2M, and $8.4M through 2019, and is eligible for a 5th year option in 2021.

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The Eagles brought in a few veterans to support Wentz, including Nick Foles on a 2 year $11M contract ($7M guaranteed, $1.6M cap figure in 2017). With $5.4M in dead cap to go along with a $7.6M cap hit in 2018, Foles is a bit of a financial clog for Philly, who will likely need to be a post 6/1/2018 release to make financial sense ($4M 2018 savings). Philly also signed Matt McGloin on a 1 year $800,000 deal  ($25,000 guaranteed) and are carrying UDFA camp bodies in Greg Ward & Dane Evans.


Pittsburgh Steelers

Pittsburgh’s internal policy to not guarantee salaries means large signing bonuses for their elite players. $18.6M of Ben Roethlisberger‘s $32M signing bonus from 2015 remains as dead cap in 2017. Should Ben walk away after 2017, the Steelers will be on the hook for $12.4M in dead cap, provided he does so before a $5M roster bonus is paid next year. This is a situation to watch in the next 6 months.

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Landry Jones returns to backup Ben on a 2 year $4.4M deal, including a modest $600,000 in guarantees. He can be released after 2017 for just $300,000 in dead cap. The Steelers selected Joshua Dobbs in the 4th round this May, but his 4 year contract also contains just $600,000 guaranteed.


San Francisco 49ers

Brian Hoyer takes the reigns of a much turned over 49ers roster on a 2 year $12M contract. However San Francisco can clear $4.5M in 2018 by releasing him ($2M dead cap).

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Matt Barkley signed a 2 year $4M contract to compete with Hoyer this summer, and he’ll hold just $250,000 in dead cap next year ($1.8M savings). The Niners drafted C.J. Beathard in the 3rd round this May, but his 4 year deal contains just $706,288 in guarantees. UDFA Nick Mullens rounds out the depth chart.


Seattle Seahawks

Three years into his extension, Russell Wilson still carries $31.2M in dead into the 2017 campaign. This figure will max out at $17.3M in 2018 before dropping down to $6.2M prior to the 2019 season, his first “likely out”.

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Austin Davis joins the Seahawks on a minimum salary ($50,000 guaranteed) and will compete with Trevone Boykin for the QB2 spot this summer. Boykin carries minimum tenders in both 2017 & 2018.


Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Jameis Winston enters year 3 of his rookie contract carrying a $6.9M cap figure. His $2.1M offsetting roster bonus is due the 5th day of training camp. His cap hit will rise to a modest $8M in 2018, when the Bucs will have the option to exercise a 5th year in 2019.

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Tampa Bay added some experience to backup Winston, including journeyman Ryan Fitzpatrick, who signed a 1 year $3M deal that includes $1.25M in upfront guarantees. They also brought back Ryan Griffin on a $1.797M tender to compete for the role. UDFA Sifo Liufau rounds out the depth chart.


Tennessee Titans

Like Winston above, Mariota enter season #3 of his rookie deal with nearly identical structure/numbers ($6.6M cap figure, offsetting roster bonus). A strong 2017 should get contract extension discussions swirling next spring.

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Matt Cassel returns to the fold to support Mariota on a 2 year $5.25M contract, but no immediate dead cap in 2018 ($2.5M savings). Alex Tanney ($540,000), and UDFA Tyler Ferguson round out the position, with the latter in a good spot for the practice squad.


Washington Redskins

For now the Kirk Cousins drama appears to be over (albeit trade rumors). The 28-year-old is set to earn $23.9M in 2017 before almost certainly hitting the open free agent market next spring.

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Colt McCoy enters year 2 of his 3 year $9M contract last offseason, but holds just $1.2M in dead cap ($2.4M savings if released). That figure drops to $600,000 after 2017. Nate Sudfeld (6th round, 2016) rounds out the position with a $574k cap figure and just $103,002 in dead cap to go with it.

Category: NFL Spots


Article by: Michael Ginnitti

Managing Editor of Spotrac