Patrick Mahomes, Dak Prescott and the Largest QB Contracts in NFL History

Jenna CiccotelliAnalyst IIMarch 9, 2021

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (4) pump fakes as he looks to throw a pass in the second half of an NFL football game against the New York Giants in Arlington, Texas, Sunday, Oct. 11, 2020. (AP Photo/Ron Jenkins)
Ron Jenkins/Associated Press

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott inked a new deal on Monday—and it's among the largest for a quarterback in NFL history. 

According to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network, Prescott is under contract for four years at $160 million, with $126 million guaranteed and the opportunity for it to expand to $164 million. In addition, he got a no-trade clause and a no-tag provision.

With an average annual value of $40 million, Prescott's new contract will be the second-largest for a quarterback in NFL history.  

Prescott booted Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson, who signed a four-year, $156 million deal in September ($39 million AAV), out of second place. 

As for the all-time quarterback contract leader, he's also the contract leader in any position—and in any sport. When Patrick Mahomes signed a 10-year extension with the Kansas City Chiefs fresh off his Super Bowl victory last year, he inked the largest deal in sports history at $450 million, with an average annual payout of $45 million. 

In fourth place is Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson, whose four-year deal from 2019 boasts an average payout of $35 million. 

That means the top four contracts in NFL history are active ones, a sign of the value placed on the position in the NFL.

As for the three on the list, they belong to active quarterbacks, but Ben Roethlisberger reportedly signed a new deal with the Pittsburgh Steelers on March 4 that reduces his salary from the $68 million, two-year extension from 2019. Now-Detroit Lions quarterback Jared Goff and Green Bay Packers star Aaron Rodgers are tied for No. 6 on four-year deals worth $33.5 million annually. 

Some more historic names get thrown into the mix when the contract value is adjusted for inflation. Brett Favre signed a five-year, $39.4 million deal with the Packers in 1997 that would account for $34.3 million annually in today's dollars according to Over the Cap, a figure that makes him fourth on the list behind Mahomes, Prescott and Watson. 

Right behind that is Carson Palmer's 2005 deal with the Cincinnati Bengals, a six-year, $97 million deal that adjusts to $34.1 million in 2021 dollars.

But looking at who has earned similar payouts, whether it was in 2021 or two decades ago, one thing is for sure. These sorts of contracts are reserved for the NFL's best.