Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts signed a five-year contract extension Monday in exchange for $255 million, making him the highest-paid player in NFL history .
“You have to keep the main thing in Philadelphia. We have reached an agreement with Jalen Hurts on a five-year extension until the 2028 season,” was the announcement made by the Eagles through their social networks.
Hurts’ total contract exceeds the one quarterback Deshaun Watson signed with the Cleveland Browns last year for $230 million.
The agreement says that the passer will have the possibility of earning 274.3 million dollars in 2028 if incentives are included, plus the 4.3 million of his last year of rookie contract corresponding to this 2023 season.
According to multiple reports Jori Epstein, Hurts and the Eagles have agreed to a five-year, $255 million contract that will keep him in Philadelphia through the 2028 season. The contract also includes over $179 million in guarantees, and will make Hurts the highest-paid player in NFL history. The Eagles announced the extension, but did not reveal any other details about the contract.
Hurts, 24, just finished his third season with the Eagles. He made massive strides forward in 2022, using his legs and arm to become one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL. He helped lead the Eagles to a 14-3 record and an NFC championship (though they lost 38-35 to the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LVII).
In just three years, Hurts’ presence changed the Eagles’ direction. They picked him in the second round of the 2020 NFL Draft, a move that surprised many Eagles fans and even some players, or really just one: QB Carson Wentz. Wentz was reportedly unhappy that the Eagles drafted another quarterback, and that is what began Wentz’s final, dismal season in Philly. Wentz was benched for Hurts late in the season before Philly shipped him out to the Indianapolis Colts in the offseason.
The negotiations between Lamar Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens just got harder. There’s been plenty of attention paid to the contract talks between Baltimore and its star quarterback over the past two years. The ease with which the Eagles settled on a deal with Hurts makes that situation all the more confounding. There’s no question Jackson should try to get every penny he can get from the Ravens. He also should take note of how much easier life can be when you grab a great deal sitting in front of you.
Hurts became the highest paid player in NFL history simply by realizing he has an ideal situation. He’s surrounded by a lot of talent, and he’s working for an organization that has done a lot to make him comfortable as he’s grown into a star quarterback. That sounds very much like the circumstances surrounding Jackson in Baltimore, and the Ravens clearly would like to continue supporting him with good players while paying him market value. Hurts may not have a MVP award he finished second to Patrick Mahomes last season but he also has taken his team to a Super Bowl, which is something Jackson hasn’t done. You can bet that will come up in conversation whenever these two parties talk money next.
Player salaries will once again be on the rise, and that’s particularly true for quarterbacks. The going rate for high-end quarterbacks was right around $40 million per year when the Buffalo Bills’ Josh Allen and Dallas Cowboys’ Dak Prescott received extensions in 2021 and has since ballooned to about $50 million per season.
Hurts represents the high-water mark, but that won’t last long, especially with Baltimore Ravens QB Lamar Jackson, Los Angeles Chargers QB Justin Herbert and Cincinnati Bengals QB Joe Burrow eligible for new deals. As tempting as it might have looked to let Hurts play out the final year of his rookie deal, in which he was scheduled to make a base salary of $4.2 million, the Eagles will end up saving themselves money by getting an extension done before the other QBs do.
“You want to find something that he feels really good about, and at the same time that we feel good about and surround him with good players. He knows that,” Roseman said at the scouting combine in February. “… That doesn’t mean that it’s not going to be a tremendous contract for him, because he deserves that, too.”
With receivers A.J. Brown and DeVonta Smith and tight end Dallas Goedert under contract through at least 2024, the nucleus of playmakers will remain in place in the near term.
Still, having a quarterback on a megadeal alters how a team must roster-build. The Eagles likely plan to lean more heavily on draft picks to fill out the roster moving forward. They have six picks overall, including a pair of first-rounders, in the 2023 draft.
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