NFL contracts are often a hot-button issue. People love to debate who’s making too much, too little, who deserves more, and who is overpaid. Some athletes outplay their deals, while others cash in and fail to deliver. Teams obviously try hard to avoid the latter situation, but sometimes things don’t work out as hoped.
With all of that in mind, here’s a look at the worst contract on every NFL team entering the 2018 season.
Arizona Cardinals – Jermaine Gresham, TE
After signing him to two consecutive one-year deals, the Cardinals suddenly decided to invest heavily in Jermaine Gresham, signing him to a four-year, $28 million deal with $16.5 million guaranteed. The $7 million annual salary far exceeds any contract Gresham had previously signed, which is curious considering he hasn’t exceeded 500 yards in a single season since 2012 with the Cincinnati Bengals. Add in that Greshman is now on the wrong side of 30, and it’s easy to understand how he made this list.
Through the first five weeks of the NFL season, some familiar names sit atop the offensive statistical categories. Quarterbacks like Rodgers and Brady lead many passing categories, while receivers like A.J. Green and Antonio Brown top many receiving categories. But there are some fresh faces in the league doing big things, as well as a few surprises emerging with their clubs.
Here’s a look at each NFL team’s best offensive skill player so far in 2017.
Arizona Cardinals — J.J. Nelson, WR
Larry Fitzgerald still has more catches and yardage, but in terms of big plays, it is Nelson who has paced the Cardinals this season. He has the highest yards per catch of any Arizona wide receiver, and his two touchdowns are tied with Fitzgerald for the team lead. It’s only a matter of time before he is the No. 1 receiver in Arizona. Nelson is already getting plaudits now — his five catch, 120 yard performance in Week 2 earned him NFC Offensive Player of the Week honors.
Atlanta Falcons — Devonta Freeman, RB
Impressively, Freeman alone has five touchdowns this season — as many as quarterback Matt Ryan has thrown for over the same amount of games. Those five touchdowns are good enough to tie him for the NFL lead with Leonard Fournette of the Jaguars. His yardage total doesn’t jump off the page — at 285 yards, he’s only 13th in the NFL — but he’s scoring touchdowns. That’s been huge for the Falcons in a year where Ryan hasn’t quite rediscovered his best form yet.