Sam Bradford is the face of the NFL’s quarterbacking quandary. On Tuesday, the Philadelphia Eagles signed him to a two-year contract extension worth $36 million. That puts him on pace for more than $114 million in career earnings, which is astounding given his 25-37-1 record in five seasons of mediocre to downright horrible play. So bad, yet so rich.
But what was the Eagles’ alternative? Allow Bradford to hit the open market, where another team would pay him similar money, and go with Mark Sanchez?
The same day, the Washington Redskins put a franchise tag worth nearly $20 million on Kirk Cousins, hardly a top-flight answer himself. But it was either that or watch Cousins sign elsewhere and then be stuck with Robert Griffin III, the bust they drafted second overall in 2012.
This is the reality at the game’s most important position. With supply continually low and demand continually soaring, a needy team will always overpay. And that forces other teams to do the same, just to avoid the same plight.
Factor in a lack of starter-ready QBs from the draft, and you have the reason Peyton Manning might put retirement on hold and the likelihood of more head-scratching transactions.