Who is the highest paid quarterback in the NFL in 2023?
With NFL contracts and guarantees providing a murky world of headline-grabbing numbers and under-the-table pay deals, we take a look at the highest-paid QBs
After signing a massive contract back in July with the Arizona Cardinals, Kyler Murray moved right up to the podium of highest paid quarterbacks in the NFL. But he is still a little way off the top spot. With the top ten quarterbacks in the league now accounting for over $2 billion in contracted salaries, let’s look at who makes up the peak of the heap.
Kyler Murray is the 3rd highest paid QB in NFL
With his 2022 contract in place, the Arizona Cardinals’ star quarterback Kyler Murray has a five-year deal worth $230.5 million will reportedly give him $160 million in guarantees. With Murray now tied to the franchise for the foreseeable future, it’s going to be interesting to see how they build around him, seeking the success that has evaded them of recent years.
Who are the highest earning QBs in the NFL?
The interesting thing about the quoted salary figure and the guaranteed contracted payment is that, when it comes to the NFL, one doesn’t necessarily correspond with the other. Coming into the off-season, the Kansas City Chiefs’ Patrick Mahomes had the highest average salary at $45 million per year, but he has since been overtaken by four big names: Aaron Rodgers, Russell Wilson, Kyler Murray and Deshaun Watson.
The Packers and Aaron Rodgers came to an extension agreement that will see the current MVP make an average of just under $50.3 million per year for the next three years. Russell Wilson agreed to a five-year deal with the Denver Broncos which will see him taking home $49 million per year.
Kyler Murray’s long-term agreement with the Cardinals, coming on the heels of months of speculation and high drama between the hot quarterback and the owners, sees him take a year-average $46.1 million. But the big story, of course, is the jaw-dropping deal that Deshaun Watson managed to pull off with the Cleveland Browns to fully guarantee his $46 million average annual salary.
All of the NFL’s top 10 quarterbacks make over $35 million annually. The top eight are over the $40 million annual threshold.
|1||Aaron Rodgers||Green Bay Packers||$50.3 million|
|2||Russell Wilson||Denver Broncos||$49 million|
|3||Kyler Murray||Arizona Cardinals||$46.1 million|
|4||Deshaun Watson||Cleveland Browns||$46 million|
|5||Patrick Mahomes||Kansas City Chiefs||$45 million|
|6||Josh Allen||Buffalo Bills||$43 million|
|7||Derek Carr||Las Vegas Raiders||$40.5 million|
|8||Dak Prescott||Dallas Cowboys||$40 million|
|9||Matthew Stafford||Los Angeles Rams||$40 million|
|10||Kirk Cousins||Minnesota Vikings||$35 million|
Which NFL QB makes the most guaranteed money?
When it comes to guaranteed money, the length of the contract is often more of an indicator than the dollar amount, and by this metric, Deshaun Watson sits on the top of the pyramid at the moment. Knowing that his legal troubles would land a sizeable suspension, his team managed to squeeze out the deal of the century from the Clevelan Browns, guaranteeing his $230 million salary fully.
With Aaron Rodgers massive contract only a three-year deal, he falls an unbelievable $80 million below this level, giving him $150.6 million in guarantees over the term.
Just before the 2021 season, the Bills and Josh Allen set the record for his $258 million extension. He is now, only one year later, in the middle of the table.
Eleven NFL quarterbacks are making at least $100 million in guaranteed money, with Matt Ryan making nine figures but still falling outside the top ten.
|1||Deshaun Watson||Cleveland Browns||$230 million|
|2||Kyler Murray||Arizona Cardinals||$189.5 million|
|3||Russell Wilson||Denver Broncos||$165 million|
|4||Aaron Rodgers||Green Bay Packers||$150.8 million|
|5||Josh Allen||Buffalo Bills||$150 million|
|6||Patrick Mahomes||Kansas City Chiefs||$141.5 million|
|7||Matthew Stafford||Los Angeles Rams||$130 million|
|8||Dak Prescott||Dallas Cowboys||$126 million|
|9||Jared Goff||Detroit Lions||$110 million|
|10||Carson Wentz||Washington Commanders||$108 million|
With NFL quarterback salaries on a seemingly unending rising arc, one thing is absolutely certain, these numbers won’t be the final word. Over the next few years, and possibly even months, we can expect to see new names joining these ranks and the zeros at the end of the line ticking ever upward.
To be able to comment you must be registered and logged in. Forgot password?