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Sunday, May 19, 2024

What 2024’s Stacked NFL Draft QB Class Will Earn on Rookie Deals

  • Caleb Williams leads the way with a 4-year, $39 million deal with the Bears.
  • Teams took quarterbacks with the first three picks on Thursday night.
Kimberly P. Mitchell – USA TODAY NETWORK

The long-standing, much-debated NFL truism has been that it’s easier to win with a quarterback on a rookie contract. (The actual evidence for this view is mixed at best.)

But there is an obvious appeal to not having to blow huge amounts of money on the QB position and having cash to burn on the rest of the roster.

The biggest shock of the night was the Atlanta Falcons taking quarterback Michael Penix Jr. eighth overall despite signing Kirk Cousins earlier this offseason. Cousins and Atlanta had agreed to a four-year deal with $100 million in guarantees just last month. The run on quarterbacks and receivers meant that for the first time in the common draft era, no defensive players were drafted in the top ten.

2024’s quarterback class was the most hyped in years, led by the last two Heisman Trophy winners in Caleb Williams and Jayden Daniels. Here’s what their rookie contracts are worth, along with the rest of the top 10.

All contract values are according to Spotrac; the NFL salary cap for 2024 is more than $255 million and typically increases slightly every year. Under the collective bargaining agreement, rookie deals for first-round picks are for four years with a fifth-year team option. Teams still have to sign the players to the actual contract and negotiate minor terms like offset money and bonuses.

No. 1 QB Caleb Williams (Bears/USC) Four years, $39.4 million
No. 2 QB Jayden Daniels (Commanders/LSU) Four years, $37.7 million
No. 3 QB Drake Maye (Patriots/North Carolina) Four years, $36.6 million
No. 4 WR Marvin Harrison, Jr. (Cardinals/Ohio State) Four years, $35.3 million
No. 5 OT Joe Alt (Chargers/Notre Dame) Four years, $33.1 million
No. 6 WR Malik Nabers (Giants/LSU) Four years, $29.2 million
No. 7 OT JC Latham (Titans/Alabama) Four years, $26.0 million
No. 8 QB Michael Penix Jr. (Falcons/Washington) Four years, $22.8 million
No. 9 WR Rome Odunze (Bears/Washington) Four years, $22.7 million
No. 10 QB J.J. McCarthy (Vikings via trade/Michigan) Four years, $21.8 million
No. 12 QB Bo Nix (Broncos/Oregon) Four years, $18.6 million

This is a developing news story and will be updated.

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