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Top Ten Highest Paid NFL Players

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There are many fans who don’t give a second thought about the fact that their favorite NFL players make enough money each year to feed half of Africa as long as they do well in fantasy football. Even if you fall into this category, though, its still fun to think about who the league’s highest paid players are (and whether or not they deserve the cash they’re earning). This is a pretty cut and dry top ten (I know, I know, you’ll miss my witty commentary), but sometimes, numbers speak for themselves. 

 

Top Ten Highest Paid NFL Players

USA TODAY Sports

1. Aaron Rodgers (QB-Packers) - Rodgers, who signed a 5-year, $110 million extension in spring of 2013, earns $22 million per year. It’s no surprise he’s at the very top of this list. 

 

2. Joe Flacco (QB-Ravens) - While the merits of signing Flacco to a 6-year, $120.6 million contract in 2013 can certainly be debated, the fact remains that the man is second on this list, making bank with $20.1 million annually. 

 

3. Drew Brees (QB-Saints) - Brees’s $100 million contract with New Orleans includes $60 million guaranteed. The agreement was front-loaded and Brees took home $40 million ins 2012, the first year his new deal was active. 

 

4. Peyton Manning (QB-Broncos) - While some of you might be surprised that Manning doesn’t top this list, keep in mind that he was coming off of serious neck surgery when he signed his 5-year, $96 million deal with Denver. Manning still isn’t hurting, making $19.2 million per annum. 

 

5. Calvin Johnson (WR-Lions) - The first non-QB to make this list, Johnson, quite frankly, has been deserving of every cent of the $18.8 million that Detriot is paying him each year. Megatron’s contract is an 8-year, $150.5 million deal. 

 

6. Tony Romo (QB-Cowboys) - Despite Dallas’s recent bout of mediocrity (three 8-8 seasons and counting, y’all), the squad’s brass saw fit to ink a 6-year, $108 million deal with their starting QB. Romo makes $18 per year and has $55 million guaranteed money heading his way no matter what. 

 

7. Eli Manning (QB-Giants) - Is it really any surprise that both of the league’s Mannings made this list? Eli does still have one more Super Bowl ring than his big brother, after all. Even though Manning struggled in 2013, I look for him to get back on track and become deserving, once more, of the $15.3 million New York pays him yearly. 

 

8. Mario Williams (DE-Bills) - Raking in $16 million per year, Williams is the league’s highest-earning defensive player by a long shot. Given Buffalo’s defensive woes over the past couple of seasons, some might question whether or not Williams is worth this kind of dough, but think about where they’d be without him. Not a pretty alternative. 

 

9. Larry Fitzgerald (WR-Cardinals) - Arizona clearly understands just how much Fitzgerald brings to their squad, to the tune of $14.1 million a year. Fitzgerald is one of the league’s premiere wideouts and, after inking an 8-year, $113 million contract with him, Arizona is obviously willing to do what it takes to keep him in Glendale. 

 

10. Tom Brady (QB-Patriots) - The only reason Brady doesn’t rank higher on this list is his willingness to restructure his contract to get the Pats under the salary cap a couple of seasons back. Brady and Giselle aren’t hurting for cash, though. New England’s QB still takes home $14.1 million a year and is guaranteed $57 million out of his restructured deal.

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