Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Schaub has a great job. At 36 years old, he’s still on a NFL roster, relegated to a role unlikely to give him CTE. He has earned nearly $90 million since the Falcons drafted him in 2004. Now, over a decade later, he’s under contract until the end of next season, at which point he will 37 years old.
Schaub has been a serviceable backup over the past two seasons. I say that because experience means something at the quarterback position in the NFL. If the unthinkable happened and franchise quarterback Matt Ryan went down, at least he has a seasoned veteran backing him up. (Not to mention the veteran leadership, ability to contribute in the quarterback room/on the sideline, etc.) But do we really know how much he has left in the tank? And it’s practically undeniable that he won’t be around after 2018.
The question is a simple one: should we expect diminishing returns with Schaub? If the answer is yes, the Falcons may need to consider their options in free agency and the draft.
Money factors in here. Schaub’s cap hit jumps $2 million in 2018. He’d represent $1.25 million in dead money if he’s cut before June 1st. (It appears he’s entitled to a $1.5 million roster bonus otherwise.) Put differently, as the 2018 roster is assembled, Schaub’s veteran contract may be a little too expensive.
So on the one hand, Schaub has got the experience, such that we may not have a complete disaster on our hands if he had to step in. On the other hand, if we’re really pinching pennies and looking to the future, there are potentially better options out there.