Aaron Rodgers Asked Falcons GM to Ink Matt Ryan to Contract so He Could Do His

Kyle Newport@@KyleNewportFeatured ColumnistMay 25, 2018

ATLANTA, GA - SEPTEMBER 17:  Aaron Rodgers #12 of the Green Bay Packers talks with Matt Ryan #2 of the Atlanta Falcons after the Falcons defeated the Packers 34-23 at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on September 17, 2017 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Two years remain on Aaron Rodgers' contract, which makes the Green Bay Packers quarterback a candidate to get an extension.

However, before he got serious in negotiations, he needed the market to be set.

Atlanta Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff revealed on Andrew Brandt's The Business of Sports podcast (h/t NFL.com's Herbie Teope) that Rodgers asked him to get Matt Ryan signed so the Packers star could get his own deal done.

"I saw Aaron, interestingly enough, at the Super Bowl in the airport," Dimitroff said. "He just said to me, 'We don't know each other that well, but just get this deal done with Matt first so I can get on with my life.'"

Per Spotrac, Rodgers is scheduled to make $19.8 million in 2018 and $20 million in 2019.

When he signed a five-year, $110 million contract in 2013, he was the highest-paid player in football. However, many passers have since topped the average annual value of that deal, including a handful this offseason.

Kirk Cousins received a fully guaranteed three-year, $84 million deal from the Minnesota Vikings in free agency. Drew Brees re-upped with the New Orleans Saints to the tune of two years and $50 million. Jimmy Garoppolo—who has seven career starts—received $137.5 million from the San Francisco 49ers. And Ryan became the first NFL player to get $30 million per year thanks to a five-year, $150 million extension.

Sitting back and waiting for the market to shake out has been beneficial to Rodgers.

Of those quarterbacks, only Brees has a Super Bowl title on his resume. Ryan has a Super Bowl appearance and an NFL MVP award to his name. Cousins and Garoppolo have neither as starters. On the other hand, Rodgers has a Super Bowl ring, Super Bowl MVP honors and two NFL MVP awards.

Rodgers is coming off a season in which he was limited to seven games due to a broken collarbone. It marked the first time since his first year as a starter in 2008 that the Packers posted a losing record or missed out on the postseason, further demonstrating his value to the franchise.

Green Bay GM Brian Gutekunst noted earlier this month he is "confident" a deal will get done. Ryan's extension has set the bar for the negotiations.

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