The NFL now has a $30 million a year quarterback. And it’s not Aaron Rodgers.
According to Chris Mortensen of ESPN, the Falcons have agreed to a new five-year extension with quarterback Matt Ryan, which hits a new benchmark for annual average, and includes $100 million guaranteed.
Running backs were devalued draft- and contract-wise for many years while teams like the Patriots, Packers and, yes, the Giants, won Super Bowls without backs drafted in the top 10. The trend recently has shifted, as top backs have been taken high in the past three drafts. And all of them — Leonard Fournette (No. 4) by Jacksonville last year, Ezekiel Elliott (No. 4) by Dallas in 2016 and Todd Gurley (No. 10) by the Rams in 2015 — became 1,000-yard rushers as rookies.
Last week, before the 49ers didn’t use any of their nine picks on an edge rusher, Lynch was asked if signing Dumervil could be an option after the dust settled from the draft.
Edge rusher: Although the Broncos will pick up the option of Shane Ray to keep him with the team through next season, he’s had disappointing production and limited progress as a force opposite Von Miller. Denver was only No. 22 in the NFL with its 33 sacks last season.
Tight end: Virgil Green left for the division-rival Chargers, leaving Jeff Heuermann and Jake Butt — each with Big Ten talent but equal injury concern — as the top two on the depth chart. They need to think about getting a well-rounded Kyle Rudolph-type for Keenum.
Harvey has been mostly awful since 2016, when he was diagnosed with thoracic outlet syndrome. Before that, he virtually owned baseball in New York City, earning the Dark Knight nickname as he rose to fame as the best pitcher in the city and because of a celebrity status that often landed him in tabloid headlines and behavior that put him at odds with his team.
He might not have to wait long to start trying to prove it, either. Jackson’s skill set should be especially intriguing for the Ravens since assistant head coach Greg Roman helped create packages that led to Colin Kaepernick flourishing when both were with San Francisco.
Speaking of the 49ers, general manager John Lynch offered praise of Jackson when asked whether the QB made the right move in not trying to convert to wide receiver before the draft.