Andrew Luck is buying if there’s ever an occasion when a group of active NFL quarterbacks go out for dinner.
The Colts signed their quarterback to a six-year, $139 million deal. It’s the biggest contract in NFL history, according to Spotrac.
In this age of the $20 million quarterback, Luck now tops the list with an average annual salary of more than $24 million. Does he make the six-pack of the NFL’s most overpaid quarterbacks?
The list takes a number of factors into account, including average annual salary, salary cap hit and the quarterback’s body of work.
Spotrac was used for contract numbers.
No. 6: Jay Cutler
Jay Cutler posted a career-high passer rating of 92.3 in 2015, but he won’t have Adam Gase as his offensive coordinator in 2016.
Cutler takes up more than 10 percent of the Bears’ salary cap with a hit of $17 million, and his average annual salary of $18.1 million is 15th in the league.
The 33-year-old Cutler threw a league-high 18 interceptions in 2014, is 16-25 as a starter over the last three seasons and has made the playoffs just once in his 10-year career.
No. 5: Brock Osweiler
Brock Osweiler threw two touchdown passes and three interceptions in his final eight quarters as a starter last season before losing the job to a broken-down Peyton Manning in Week 17.
The Texans, however, were desperate enough for a quarterback to sign Osweiler to a four-year, $72 million contract.
Osweiler’s salary counts only $12 million agaisnt the cap this year, but that number spikes to $19 million next year. His average annual salary of $18 million is equal to Tony Romo and $1.5 million more than Carson Palmer.
Osweiler went 5-2 as a starter last season and the Broncos probably wouldn’t have won the Super Bowl without him. But the Texans are throwing big money at him for what he did in seven games.
No. 4: Nick Foles
It’s not that Nick Foles is making a ton of money. It’s just that he’s on the wrong side of a wide gulf on the list of average annual salaries and cap hits.
Foles’ average annual salary of $12.27 million in 2016 is 23rd among quarterbacks. Next on the list is Robert Griffin III at $7.5 million. His cap hit of $8.75 million is also 23rd, with Jameis Winston next at $5.76 million. Winston is the Buccaneers’ quarterback of the future while the Rams are trying to get rid of Foles after drafting Jared Goff.
The two-year, $24.5 million contract Foles is playing under is affordable, but it’s a lot of money for a guy who will probably be a backup for another team next season.
No. 3: Ryan Tannehill
Ryan Tannehill isn’t quite part of the $20 million quarterback fraternity. He’s averaging $19.25 million a year. He doesn’t deserve to be so close to that circle, however.
Tannehill’s deal is cap-friendly this year. The $11.64 million on the Dolphins’ cap is second to Ndamukong Suh’s $12.6 million. But it will jump to more than $20 million next year and remain in that ballpark in 2018, 2019 and 2020.
Despite being sacked 184 times in his four-year career, Tannehill hasn’t missed a game. Beyond his durability, though, there’s nothing that really stands out about Tannehill. He’s never led the Dolphins to a winning season and is 29-35 as a starter.
I’ve now watched 8 Ryan Tannehill starts against NYJ defenses of varying talent & coaching. Nothing remotely intimidating about playing him
— Joe Caporoso (@TurnOnTheJets) June 24, 2016
Tannehill’s career passer rating of 85.2 is lower than Jay Cutler’s 86.0. New Dolphins coach Adam Gase will have to give Tannehill at least as much of a jolt as he gave Cutler. Otherwise, Tannehill won’t be worth the cap space he’ll be occupying after 2016.
No. 2: Sam Bradford
The Eagles chose Carson Wentz with the second overall pick in the 2016 draft, but Sam Bradford is taking up the most cap space on the team ($12.5 million).
Bradford has never had a winning record as a starter in any season and he’s missed a season and a half with two ACL injuries. He’s 29th among active quarterbacks with 6.5 yards per pass attempt, yet he’s making an average of $17.5 million a year to keep the seat warm for Wentz.
No. 1: Colin Kaepernick
Colin Kaepernick is being paid $19 million a year and counting more than $15 million against the 49ers’ salary cap largely because he led the team to the Super Bowl in 2012 and the NFC championship game in 2013.
Since then, however, Kaepernick has gone 10-14 as a starter and he lost that starting job to Blaine Gabbert last year. He’s going to have to win it back in training camp.
Kaepernick had three surgeries, including a shoulder procedure, during the offseason. Like the second- and third-most overpaid quarterbacks in the NFL, he’ll be playing for a new coach in 2016.
Unlike Ryan Tannehill and Sam Bradford, Kaepernick has played in postseason games and a Super Bowl. There are some quarterbacks making more than him who haven’t been to a Super Bowl. But at least they’ve held on to their starting jobs.