As predicted, this has the potential to become the offseason of Alex Smith. The KC Chiefs QB has one year left on his contract and after all parties seem to be happy after his initial season, the Chiefs will try to negotiate a contract extension with him this offseason, according to a report from Jason Cole of National Football Post.
That Alex Smith is likely to get a contract extension shouldn't be a big surprise at this point, especially considering we just raised this topic yesterday. The Chiefs talked nice about Smith all season so there's that but for a more concrete reason you shouldn't be surprised, look no further than the draft picks they gave up for him. The Chiefs gave up two second round picks for Smith. That strongly suggests they expect him to be in Kansas City beyond the 2014 season.
So the next logical step is a contract extension.
Andy Reid was asked this week on 810 WHB about Smith's deal and he deferred to GM John Dorsey, who probably won't say much about Smith's deal when he speaks next.
So if we assume that the Chiefs want to extend his contract, and that Smith wants his contract extended, what kind of deal can we expect?
Here are some recent QB contracts (H/T Windy City Gridiron):
January 2014: Jay Cutler, 7-year, $126 million ($54 million guaranteed)
July 2013: Matthew Stafford, 5-year, $76 million ($41.5 million guaranteed)
July 2013: Matt Ryan, 6-year, $113 million ($59 million guaranteed)
April 2013: Aaron Rodgers, 7-year, $130 million ($54 million guaranteed)
March 2013: Tony Romo, 7-year, $119 million ($55 million guaranteed)
March 2013: Joe Flacco, 6-year, $120 million ($52 million guaranteed)
September 2012: Matt Schaub, 4-year, $62 million ($30 million guaranteed)
July 2012: Drew Brees, 5-year, $100 million ($40 million guaranteed
March 2012: Peyton Manning, 5-year, $96 million ($60 million guaranteed)
And this, my friends, is why quarterback contracts suck right now. It's also why Smith's deal last season and this upcoming one is so nice -- just $15 million over two seasons, while many teams are paying $15 million for just one season for a quarterback.
Smith is due $7.5 next season. In theory, the Chiefs could retain his rights for three more years via the franchise tag, which was $15 million last season. So if you assume the tag number stays about the same, the Chiefs would be nearing $40 million over the next three seasons to keep him via the use of back-to-back franchise tags. I suppose that's where the negotiations could begin.
Even if Smith isn't one of the elite quarterbacks, paying a quarterback is still an expensive decision.