Cam Newton to earn $103.8 million in extension
Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton is cashing in on Tuesday, with the news breaking of his five-year, $103.8 million extension, per Ian Rapoport of NFL Network. Newton's contract will keep him in Carolina through the 2020 season, provided he plays out the duration of his contract without either party moving on.
The details of an NFL deal are always the most important, because unlike the other major sports, they are not fully guaranteed. Newton is getting $60 million in guaranteed money with half of it in 2016, something that should make him set for life. However, that large number will hurt Carolina's ability to build on a team which has won consecutive NFC South titles, albeit with a 7-8-1 mark in 2014.
The money paid out to Newton makes sense when comparing his dollar figures to other NFL quarterbacks, but it is woefully out of whack when you look at his numbers. Newton has a 30-31-1 record as a starter over his four seasons with the Panthers and a 59.5 percent completion percentage. Since his rookie season of 2011, Newton has not thrown for more than 4,000 yards and has never hit 25 touchdowns.
For all the sizzle that comes along with him, Newton compares more to solid quarterbacks like Ryan Tannehill and Alex Smith than to Matthew Stafford and Tony Romo. This offseason, Tannehill signed a four-year, $77 million extension through 2020 with $45 million guaranteed. Smith was signed long-term last year by the Kansas City Chiefs, netting him four years and $68 million with the same amount guaranteed that Tannehill received.
Ultimately, Andrew Luck and Russell Wilson saw these numbers and the reaction was as follows:
In the end, good for Newton. In business, you are worth what the market dictates, and the market has made the Heisman Trophy winner a very rich man.