The details have begun to emerge for the new Carson Wentz contract. As usual, however, the full and accurate details won’t be known until the full contract can be scrutinized.
Per multiple reports, Wentz’s four-year extension has a base value of $128 million. Because, however, there are no actual contract extensions but only new contracts written and executed from scratch, Wentz now has a six-year deal, with a base value of $154.7 million. (The extra $26.7 million comes from the $4 million in base pay that Wentz will earn in 2019, plus the $22.7 million option-year salary he would have earned in 2020.)
Those numbers create a new-money average of $32 million, and a total value at signing of $25.7 million.
Under the new-money metric, Wentz landed behind only Russell Wilson ($35 million), Ben Roethlisberger ($34 million), and Aaron Rodgers ($32.5 million). Based on total value at signing, however, Wentz lands behind the likes of Kirk Cousins ($28 million) and Jimmy Garoppolo ($27.5 million).
The guarantees reportedly exceed $100 million. But the initial reports always blur the line between true guarantee and injury guarantee, with reporters pushing the higher (and inaccurate) number as the quid pro quo for getting the info before it’s available via others sources, like the NFLPA database. The full picture as to the Wentz guarantees won’t be known, probably for at least a few days.
In the end, it can be characterized as a win-win deal, at least for now. As the salary cap climbs (based on a new CBA, new TV deals, and the still-vague impacts of gambling on total revenue), Wentz’s deal could quickly become obsolete, but he’ll remain bound to the team through 2024.
That said, the new-money average becomes impressive in light of the fact that Wentz has suffered in two consecutive Decembers season-ending injuries. The Eagles are taking a calculated risk, putting a large bird on the table before Wentz has proven that he can stay healthy long enough to kill, cook, and eat it.
While Wentz could have done better after 2019, he also could have done worse. And it’s one thing to rattle off what a player wants in the abstract; it’s quite another to say “no thanks” when the team makes an offer that the player as a practical matter can’t refuse.