Year-by-year details of Aaron Rodgers' new deal

Tom Silverstein
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
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Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers pumps his fists after defeating the Chicago Bears on Dec. 18, 2016, at Soldier Field.

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers may not have broken new ground with the structure of his four-year, $134 million contract extension, but he did get the club to compensate him handsomely for going with a standard contract.

Details of Rodgers’ deal were leaking out Thursday, and one intriguing aspect of the payout for the future Hall of Fame quarterback was that the Packers paid him significantly more than they would have had to if they’d refused to renegotiate and made him play under the franchise tag for two more seasons.

Rodgers would have been due roughly $103 million over those four years if you include the $42 million he was due in the remaining two years of his contract and if he’d played for a franchise tag of roughly $28 million in 2020 and $33.6 million in ’21. The latter two figures are estimates based on recent salary-cap estimates.

Instead of getting $103 million over four years, the extension pays Rodgers $102 million over three years.

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According to a source with knowledge of the Rodgers deal, the quarterback will receive $66.9 million by the end of the 2018 season. He will earn another $14.5 million in ’19 — $13.4 million of it in March — and another $20.6 million in ’20.

Included in his ’20 compensation is a $19.5 million roster bonus that becomes guaranteed two days after he receives the $13.4 million roster bonus in ’19. Though he doesn’t receive the $19.5 million bonus until the following year, it means $32.9 million will have been guaranteed on top of the $66.9 million he has already made in 2018.

Since the full amount Rodgers will receive over the six years of his deal is $176 million, it could be argued that the extension is a two-year deal worth $73 million since the Packers were going to have to pay him roughly $103 million over four years no matter what.

The amount of guaranteed money — nearly $100 million — is what makes the contract especially valuable for Rodgers. The Packers held firm on doing a standard contract and not tying any of the salaries to percentage increases of the salary cap and in turn paid a lot of guaranteed money to get the deal done.

Rodgers can thank Minnesota quarterback Kirk Cousins, who received a fully guaranteed three-year, $84 million deal in March, for raising the bar on how much guaranteed money teams must pay to keep franchise quarterbacks.

Atlanta’s Matt Ryan followed with a five-year deal that included $100 million in guaranteed money, and Rodgers went on to nearly match that mark on just a four-year deal.

The downside for Rodgers is that he might not be the highest-paid player by yearly average three or four years down the road. There are escalators worth $1 million a year from 2020-23 that will help him stay at the top, but it’s possible his deal will be topped before it’s over.

The way the Packers structured the deal, Rodgers’ salary-cap number will be $20.9 million in ’18, which is actually a reduction by $200,000 of what his cap would have been had no extension been completed.

As a result, the Packers remain roughly $11 million under the cap. Rodgers’ cap numbers over the deal are $20.9 million in ’18, $26 million in ’19, $32.6 million in ’20, $33.5 million in ’21, $37 million in ’22 and $25.5 million in ’23.

The following is a breakdown of Rodgers’ four-year, $134 million contract extension signed Wednesday. The final contract may include some slight differences than what is listed below (and some incentives from '21-'23 aren't included in these figures):


Signing bonus: $57.5M ($13 million paid 10 days after signing, $37 million paid over the 17 weeks of the regular season and $7.5 million on Dec. 26)

Base: $1.1 million

Roster bonus: $7.8 million (10 days after league year start)

Workout bonus: $500,000

Total payout in ’18: $66.9 million

Salary cap number: $20.9 million


Base salary: $1.1 million

Roster bonus: $13.4 million due on third day of league year (10 days after league year start)

Total payout in ’19: $14.5 million

Salary cap number: $26 million


Base salary: $1.1 million

Roster bonus: $19.5 million fully guaranteed if still on the roster fifth day of the 2019 league year ($10 million 10 days after league year start, $9.5 paid over 17 weeks of regular season)

Total payout in ’20: $20.6 million

Salary cap number: $32.6 million


Base salary: $14.7 million

Roster bonus: $6.8 million

Total payout in ’21: $21.5 million

Salary cap number: $33.5 million


Base salary: $25 million

Salary cap number: $37 million


Base salary: $25 million

Salary cap number: $25.5 million

Escalators in 2020

$100,000 if he plays in 72% of the snaps

$120,000 if Packers make divisional playoffs

$130,000 if Packers make the NFC championship game

$150,000 if Packers make the Super Bowl

$100,000 each if he’s in the top three in these five categories: passer rating, completion percentage, interception percentage, yards per attempt, touchdowns

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