As one of the Seattle Seahawks most urgent business matters this offseason, quarterback Russell Wilson is set to enter the final year of his contract and needs an extension.
Among a bevy of topics discussed during an interview with Jimmy Fallon on The Tonight Show, including his trip to Brazil and brief spring training appearance with the Yankees, the six-time Pro Bowl signal caller indicated he expects to sign the largest contract in NFL history.
“There’s a great potential of that,” Wilson told Fallon. “We’ll see what happens.”
Wilson, 30, will be entering his eighth NFL season. And after setting career-highs in touchdown passes and quarterback rating while leading the Seahawks to the postseason for the sixth time in seven years, he doesn’t believe he’s reached the midway point of his career.
“Being a kid, African-American kid, 5-foot-11, came from Richmond, Virginia, went to a private school, people said I wouldn’t make it in Division I-A,” Wilson said while reflecting on his unexpected rise to stardom. “Getting to where I am now, year seven going into year eight, I believe I have 10-15 more years left.”
Scheduled to earn $17 million in 2019, former sports agent Joel Corry predicts Wilson will become the NFL’s first player to earn $35 million per year on his next contract. He also projects Wilson’s new deal to set new standards in other major contract metrics such as overall contract guarantees, signing bonus, and salary fully guaranteed at signing.
According to Corry, the top of the quarterback market increased by nearly 25 percent last season, with Jimmy Garoppolo of the 49ers, Kirk Cousins of the Vikings, Matt Ryan of the Falcons, and Aaron Rodgers of the Packers receiving lucrative deals and playing musical chairs as the NFL’s highest-paid quarterbacks.
Rodgers currently sits as the NFL’s highest-paid player annually, earning $33.5 million per year on average.
With teams throwing money at quarterbacks more than ever before, there’s been speculation about Wilson’s future in Seattle, as Colin Cowherd of FS1 launched a rumor about his interest in joining the Giants.
Luckily for Seahawk fans, Wilson rebuffed the rumor when Fallon inquired about the possibility of him taking his talents to the Big Apple, throwing a light jab at New York fans by mentioning he’d won a Super Bowl there already.
“We are in New York, but I’m not sure the Seahawks are gonna let me get away.” Wilson laughed. “I love Seattle. Seattle’s a special place. Being able to win a Super Bowl there, go to two Super Bowls, multiple playoff games, and everything else.”
Only so much can be taken away from a light-hearted interview on late night television, but after taking a team-friendly deal during negotiations back in 2015, Wilson clearly wants to reset the quarterback market this time around. And based on his comments, he’ll be in line to receive a mammoth pay day at least two more times in his career, if not more.