After watching Patrick Mahomes lead them to their first AFC Championship game in 26 years, it appears the Kansas City Chiefs are planning to handsomely reward their franchise quarterback.
According to ESPN.com, Mahomes could end up landing a new deal worth up to $200 million when the time comes for him to sign an extension with the Chiefs. If that happens, that number would blow every record out of the book.
The record for biggest overall contract currently belongs to Matt Ryan, who signed a five-year, $150 million extension with the Falcons in May. Although Ryan has the biggest overall contract, Aaron Rodgers currently has the highest average annual salary on his deal. The Packers quarterback is pulling in $33.5 million per year thanks to a four-year, $134 million extension he signed in August. If Mahomes were to sign a five-year, $200 million extension, that deal would pay him an average of $40 million per year.
Of course, one thing that's not clear is when this deal will happen. As a player who was drafted in 2017, Mahomes is eligible to sign an extension after the 2019 season. However, most players don't get an extension the first year that they're eligible. In Mahomes' case, the Chiefs could technically keep him under contract through the 2021 season without giving him an extension, although it's highly unlikely they would do that considering his value to the franchise.
For Mahomes, the one small advantage of waiting for a new deal is that the salary cap basically goes up every year. The league had a cap of $177.2 million in 2018 and that will be jumping to somewhere north of $188 million in 2019. Every time the cap goes up, that potentially means there's more money for the Chiefs to give Mahomes.
No matter what happens, Mahomes is almost certainly going to break the bank, especially since the Chiefs are currently getting him for a bargain. As the 10th overall pick in the 2017 draft, Mahomes earned a slotted four-year rookie deal worth $16.4 million. The 23-year-old quarterback is under contract until 2021 and if he hasn't signed a new deal by then, the Chiefs would have the rights to keep him for another season by exercising his fifth-year option.
Thanks to his rookie contract, the Chiefs got the best bargain in football this year: The team only paid $555,000 in base salary for a player who led them to the AFC title game while becoming just the third quarterback in NFL history throw 50 or more touchdown passes in a season. In 2019, Mahomes will make just $645,000 in base salary.
Of course, Mahomes isn't the only key player on the roster who the Chiefs have to worry about paying. Tyreek Hill is going to be a more pressing concern for the team and that's because he's eligible for a new deal right now. As a fifth-round pick in 2016, Hill is allowed to negotiate an extension after his third season, which he officially completed on Sunday when the Chiefs lost to the Patriots in the AFC title game.
After making $630,000 in 2018, it won't be surprising if Hill tries to become one of the highest-paid receivers in the NFL heading into 2019. During the 2018 season, Hill finished fourth in the NFL in both receiving yards (1,479) and receiving touchdowns (12). To keep Hill happy, the Chiefs are likely going to have pay him between $16 million and $18 million per year. Even if the contract doesn't go that high, the Chiefs will almost certainly have to pay him more than they're scheduled to pay Sammy Watkins, who's currently slated to make $11.95 million in base salary in 2019.
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