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GREEN BAY, Wis. – The contract extension that quarterback Aaron Rodgers signed with the Green Bay Packers suggests that there is a good chance they will be together for at least the next two seasons.
The deal signed on Tuesday, a week after announcing he would return to the team after considering his future, is essentially a $ 150 million three-year deal that also includes two invalid years in 2025 and 2026, assisting for payroll purposes, according to a copy of the contract obtained by ESPN. The team announced the extension but did not disclose the terms.
Rodgers, 38, had been on the books for a salary cap of $ 46,144,156, but that number has been reduced by about $ 18 million.
The reigning double-league MVP will earn $ 41.95 million this season, which is fully guaranteed in the form of a $ 40.8 million roster bonus (which will be treated as a pay-as-you-go signing bonus) and a base salary of $ 1.15 million. His salary in 2023 of $ 59.465 million is also guaranteed. In 2024, his $ 49.25 million is only guaranteed against damage at the time of signing.
If Rodgers only plays one season and then retires, is released or traded in 2023, the Packers would have to absorb at least $ 68 million in dead money (and up to $ 99.8 million if it happened before June 1) – another sign that the quarterback intends to play or has committed to play at least two more seasons. By 2024, the dead money could be reduced to as low as $ 27.6 million.
A member of Packers’ medical staff flew to see Rodgers over the weekend and manage the physicals required before signing a contract. When it was completed, the deal was completed.
“We are very pleased to be able to reach an agreement with Aaron that keeps him in Green Bay,” Packers general manager Brian Gutekunst said in a statement. “His play on the field and leadership in our locker room remain crucial in our pursuit of yet another Super Bowl title. The deal also allows us to maintain and improve what we feel is already a very competitive list.”
The Packers were $ 21.2 million above the salary cap before Rodgers’ deal hit the books. Now they are close to getting under the cap, which they must be no later than Wednesday at. 16 ET. They will have to make a few more moves, though one of them is not expected to involve Rodgers’ close friend, kicker Mason Crosby. A source said there has been no change in his status or contract despite a season in which he missed nine kicks. Crosby is scheduled to earn $ 3.4 million with a ceiling of $ 4.735 million.
Rodgers’ return now puts backup quarterback Jordan Love’s future in doubt. Gutekunst’s decision to draft Love in 2020 casts doubt on Rodgers’ future with the team. Shortly after the Packers chose Love, Rodgers reiterated his desire to not only play in the 40s, but to do so with the Packers. He said, however, that he realized that “may not be a reality at this point” and added: “I’m just not sure how it all works together at this point.”
Rodgers called his future a “beautiful mystery” at the end of the 2020 season and shortly after losing the Packers’ NFC Championship Game to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers included himself in a group of players with uncertain futures.
What followed was an off-season long boycott – he missed training, organized team activities and minicamp – during which ESPN reported that Rodgers was so unhappy with the Packers that he told some in the organization that he would never play for them again.
Following his return to the team on the eve of training camp, Rodgers signed a restructured contract that eliminated the final year of his deal, for the 2023 season, making it easier for a divorce to happen after the 2021 season.
Rodgers then broke Brett Favre’s franchise record of 442 career touchdown passes last season, ending the season with 449. Rodgers now has a chance to break several of Favre’s other records, including career passing yards.