Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan isn’t a selfish football player. In fact, I dare you to find a more team-first player in the NFL. Ryan cares little about his personal accomplishments; he just wants the Falcons to win.
The Falcons last negotiated Ryan’s contract in 2013, when he was 27 years old. At the time, his contract was the second most lucrative in the NFL. (Only Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers was making more money.) He’s got another two years on that contract. But now, four years later, according to ESPN’s Kevin Seifert, his contract isn’t even top ten among NFL QBs.
Someone missing? Yup. Super Bowl MVP Tom Brady's perennially team-friendly contract ranks No. 22 on this list. His current deal with the Patriots, which expires in 2019, included $30 million in guarantees and averages $15 million per year in this reckoning. The other missing name here is the Falcons' Matt Ryan, whose APY ($20.75M) falls just $10,000 short of Newton's.
No one doubts Ryan will remain with the Falcons for his entire career. I’m not sure when the Falcons front office will look to extend his contract, but count on him getting a slight salary bump when that happens, if only to account for inflation. By the end of his current deal, Ryan will be 33 years old. (Ben Roethlisberger, Phillip Rivers, and Eli Manning all signed deals with average salaries between $21-22 million around that age.)