By leading the Baltimore Ravens to a Super Bowl championship, Joe Flacco not only did the best possible thing he could do for the organization, but also for his own contract situation. Flacco will become a free agent this offseason, and there is no better leverage in contract negotiations than the Vince Lombardi trophy.
The 28-year-old is in for a massive payday, but how big are we talking? We already know he wants to stick it to Baltimore’s owners. And at the moment, Flacco’s agent Joe Linta believes his client deserves to be the highest-paid quarterback in the NFL.
“When you do a contract of this magnitude, you look at what is the player’s body of work presently,” Linta said, via Brian A. Shactman of CNBC. “And what are the expectations going forward over the next four, five or six years.
“Joe wins on both accounts.”
When asked if Flacco should be the league’s top earner at the quarterback position, Linta emphatically said that he should be. New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees averages $20 million per season with his new deal, which means the Ravens would have to eclipse that number to put Flacco at the top. He would also make more than Peyton Manning if that happened, as Manning made $18 million with the Denver Broncos this past season.
Linta pointed to the fact that Flacco is several years younger than both Manning and Brees and has already won the same amount of championships. While Flacco and his agent have the hardware and age needed to prove their point, you have to assume at least some common sense will come into play.
Do the Ravens want to lose Flacco after what he just accomplished? Absolutely not, and they won’t. But you have to wonder if Flacco is capable of single-handedly leading his team to Super Bowls the way guys like Brees, Manning, and Tom Brady have. His record says he is. Statistics say he isn’t. If Baltimore’s defense slips as it gets older, will Flacco be able to carry the team? Quarterbacks who earn $20 million per year need to be able to do just that.