On Tuesday, the Los Angeles Chargers signed Justin Herbert to a five-year, $262.5 million deal, giving him the highest yearly salary in NFL history. While Herbert is a fine quarterback who has put up big numbers during his three-year career, the real takeaway from this news is that the Kansas City Chiefs got an absolute steal with Patrick Mahomes' contract extension.
In April of 2020, Mahomes signed a 10-year extension worth $477 million, with another $26 million in potential bonuses. That's a 10-year, $502 million deal. Mahomes is 27, has won two Super Bowls, and taken the Chiefs to a third, and he's the unquestioned best quarterback in football, and he's not even among the top-five in average per year salaries at his position.
Currently, Herbert will make $52.5 million a year, Lamar Jackson will make $52 million, Jalen Hurts is due $51 million, Aaron Rodgers is getting $50.2 million and Russell Wilson is making $50 million. Mahomes is nowhere to be found.
Mahomes isn't among the top five in guaranteed money either. Deshaun Watson's $230 million deal was fully-guaranteed, Herbert's promises him $193.7 million, Kyler Murray will get $189.5 million, Jackson is due $185 million and Hurts is guaranteed $179.3 million.
Mahomes is better than every guy on both of those lists. Not only in skill and ability on the field, but he's proven himself as a winner as well. Something guys like Herbert, Murray and Jackson haven't done.
When the Chiefs signed Mahomes to that massive contract, it looked crazy for an NFL player. Given how often players get injured and how quickly things can change. Now, only three years later, his contract looks like an absolute steal.