In case you ever thought it was possible that Aaron Rodgers would be playing somewhere other than Green Bay anytime soon, think again. Packers president Mark Murphy told ESPN.com's Rob Demovsky that the Packers and Rodgers are making progress on a contract extension.
"We've had discussions with his representative," Murphy said. "I have a lot of confidence in Brian (general manager Brian Gutekunst) and Russ and Aaron (assistant GM Aaron Ball) as well. We want to create a win-win."
Rodgers has two seasons left on the five-year, $110 million contract extension he signed back in 2013. He is set to collect base salaries of $19.8 million and $20 million during those two seasons, while he will count against the cap for approximately $20.56 million in 2018 and $21.1 million in 2019. Extending his contract beyond those two seasons would allow the Packers to artificially lower his cap hit even while guaranteeing him more money, freeing up space to use on other players that could fill roster holes elsewhere.
In the time since Rodgers signed his deal, several quarterbacks have been signed to new contracts that exceed his in total payout, average annual value, and guaranteed money. According to Spotrac, Jimmy Garoppolo, Matthew Stafford, Derek Carr, and Andrew Luck all have higher total payouts. In addition to those players, Alex Smith and Joe Flacco have contracts that carry a higher average annual value. And all of those players, plus Cam Newton, Philip Rivers, Russell Wilson, and Eli Manning signed deals that had a greater amount of practical dollar guarantees in the deal.
In other words, it's about time for the Packers to re-do Rodgers' contract in order to make sure that he is appropriately compensated as arguably the best quarterback in football. He's showing no signs of slowing down anytime soon, so tacking a few more years onto his current deal shouldn't really give them any worries, cap-wise. The new regime is wisely making it a top priority to keep him in green and gold for a long time.