back market next offseason, but it probably would take an MVP-caliber season for the Steelers star to get something in excess of $15 million per year. That's what Mike Glennon got from the Bears in free agency last offseason. No veteran starting quarterback on a multiyear deal will have a lower average annual salary than Bell, and he might be the only running back in football making more than $8 million per season.
Enter Barkley. The draft's second overall pick is locked into a four-year deal for something in the range of $32 million this offseason, all of which is fully guaranteed at signing. Before taking an NFL snap, Barkley would have more guaranteed money than any other running back in the NFL. He'd be tied with McCoy for the largest annual average salary for any running back on a multiyear deal. His four-year cash -- the [url=http://www.officialauthenticlionsstore.com/Nike-Michael-Roberts-Jersey.html]Womens Michael Roberts Jersey[/url] money he would be in line [url=http://www.officialcanadiensonline.com/Red+Brandon+Davidson+Jersey]Womens Brandon Davidson Jersey[/url] to pocket over the next four seasons -- would be third in the league behind that of McCoy and Devonta Freeman.
Let's [url=http://www.nflbillsofficialauthentic.com/Nike-Charles-Clay-Jersey.html]http://www.nflbillsofficialauthentic.com/Nike-Charles-Clay-Jersey.html[/url] run the same table for Barkley that we ran for Wentz and assume a similarly favorable outcome. Barkley's $32 million is guaranteed, and former NFL executive Joe Banner projects that the running back would be in line to make about $13 million for his fifth-year option in 2022. Let's assume that Barkley plays at a Pro Bowl-level for each of the five years of his rookie deal without getting injured. Let's also assume that the market value of top-tier running backs will rise over the next five years by $1 million per season, despite the fact that their price tag has come down over the past five seasons, as Warren Sharp pointed out.
As a player entering the league as one of the highest-paid players at his position, even a very rosy outcome for Barkley has him essentially living up to [url=http://www.sharksofficialauthenticshop.com/Brenden_Dillon_Jersey_Adidas]Womens Brenden Dillon Jersey[/url] his contract without providing any excess value: The numbers above are obviously estimates, but you get the idea. Because Barkley is entering the league as one of the highest-paid backs in football, it's impossible for him to deliver anywhere near the sort of marginal value that
would come from a rookie quarterback. The same would be true for a defensive end such as Chubb and would even qualify for a guard such as Nelson, given that top-tier guards now comfortably make more than similarly pedigreed running backs. That's without [url=http://www.authenticnuggetstore.com/Dikembe_Mutombo_Jersey]http://www.authenticnuggetstore.com/Dikembe_Mutombo_Jersey[/url] even considering that running backs get injured more frequently than players at any other position.
While the NFL has decided that Pro Bowl-caliber running backs are worth about only $8 million or so in this market, it doesn't necessarily follow that those backs should be worth that little. It's at least theoretically possible that the NFL could be underestimating how much running backs are worth to an offense and systematically underpaying guys such as McCoy and Freeman. If that were true, Barkley would be more of a bargain than his status within the running back salary structure as a potential second overall pick suggests.
While Gettleman has said that the league's devaluation of running backs is "comical," the problem is that there isn't much evidence suggesting that the NFL doesn't value running backs well. The market correction for halfbacks over the past 15 years is borne out by their shorter career spans and the success that teams such as the Patriots have had without committing to a franchise-caliber running back on a long-term contract. Of the past 10 Super Bowl winners, only two -- the Ravens with Ray Rice and the Seahawks with Marshawn Lynch -- were built around backs on top-tier multiyear contracts. The Saints had former second overall pick Reggie Bush in a rotation at halfback, but most of these teams were built around players on rookie deals or backs with middle-class contracts.
Furthermore, teams haven't really suffered when they've lost their star backs. The Cowboys weren't the same without Elliott, but the Jaguars' offense was better while Fournette was sidelined last season. In 2015, offenses around the league lost star backs such as Bell, Lynch and Arian Foster and actually improved.
The majority of big-money deals for running backs in recent years also haven't worked out. Carolina spent years desperately restructuring the deals Marty Hurney gave Stewart and DeAngelo Williams. Chris Johnson failed to make it back to the Pro Bowl after signing his extension. DeMarco Murray's deal in Philadelphia led him to be traded after one season. Even Adrian Peterson's six-year deal (which was restructured along the way) mixed one MVP season with two lost seasons and a third marred by injury. Lynch and McCoy have had the best outcomes among veteran backs since the current CBA was signed. It's possible that the market could have overcorrected and might undervalue backs, but there isn't much evidence of that.
The chances of a quarterback taken with the second overall pick turning into a franchise quarterback would have to be somewhere around 30 percent. The economic upside for a quarterback is clear, but if Sam Darnold or Josh Rosen has only a 30 percent shot of turning into the next Wentz, then the expected return for the Giants could be closer to $37 million than $125 million, which would [url=http://49ersauthenticofficialstore.com/frank-gore-jersey_c-342.html]http://49ersauthenticofficialstore.com/frank-gore-jersey_c-342.html[/url] level the playing field. (The valuation process is more complicated than that, but it works for the purposes of this example
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