Matthew Stafford’s Contract Will Surpass Derek Carr’s
Derek Carr recently signed a five-year, $125 million extension with the Oakland Raiders, which makes him the highest paid player in football. For now, at least. Matthew Stafford’s contract ends after this season, and the Lions will pay a king’s ransom to keep their franchise quarterback. Stafford’s extension should surpass Carr’s, and the 29-year-old signal caller could net as much as $30 million a year.
Both quarterbacks carried their team to the playoffs in 2016. Carr earned MVP consideration, while Stafford became the new king of fourth-quarter comebacks. In response, they each were recognized in the NFL’s Top 100. But how do these two players compare?
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For the sixth straight season, Matthew Stafford threw for more than 4,000 passing yards and 20 touchdowns. Derek Carr has yet to surpass the 4,000 yard benchmark, though he recorded 28 touchdowns and only six interceptions. When you consider the circumstances surrounding each quarterback, those numbers become fairly meaningless.
The Oakland Raiders boast one of the best (and most expensive) offensive lines in football. Their receiving corps features an emerging stud wideout in Amari Cooper, with Michael Crabtree playing second fiddle. Though unspectacular at times, their defense is chock full of impact players (Khalil Mack, Bruce Irvin). Conversely, the Detroit Lions surrendered 21 more sacks than Oakland in 2016. Their most dependable receiver last year was a 36-year-old Anquan Boldin. And forget about a run game.
Derek Carr certainly deserves an extension, he’s been a savior to a struggling Oakland franchise. However, Matthew Stafford has proved his worth time and again. And while you cannot put a price on an integral piece of your roster, the Detroit Lions will sure try.
Once Stafford becomes the richest man in football, the cap-strapped Lions will have to make a number of difficult decisions. Ziggy Ansah, Glover Quin, and Travis Swanson are all set to hit free agency, while guys like Marvin Jones and Golden Tate carry exorbitant contracts. How Bob Quinn manages Detroit’s cap situation will be a narrative to watch in the coming year.