NFL receivers are becoming overvalued

With the amount of major contracts being signed throughout major sports, some players are starting to become overpaid.


Atreyu Hinckley, Staff Writer

Throughout the last few seasons of the NFL, there have been major contracts being signed by players. Quarterback Aaron Rodgers signed a 4-year $200 million dollar contract with the Green Bay Packers, with $150 million of it being guaranteed. With contracts like these, we are now seeing a ripple effect of players expecting to be paid a lot for their talents. But do some of these players deserve these types of contracts?

Aaron Rodgers is arguably one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL, so his contract comes as no surprise. But now we have players who are beginning to see the NFL more for the money than for the love of the game, most notably, wide receivers.

In the offseason, one of the first free agent wide receivers to receive a major contract was Christian Kirk. The contract he signed to leave the Arizona Cardinals and join the Jacksonville Jaguars is 4-years for $72 million. 

Kirk has shown flashes of being a good receiver, but the numbers Kirk has posted so far in his young career makes him a No. 2 receiver at best. Kirk is being paid like he’s a No. 1 receiver and since he was the first receiver to sign a major contract in the offseason, all other star receivers have taken notice.

Davante Adams, Aaron Rodgers’s most trusted receiver, requested to be traded to the Las Vegas Raiders and signed a 5-year $141.25 million extension with the team. Next was Tyreek Hill, who was traded from the Kansas City Chiefs to the Miami Dolphins, and then signed a 4-year $120 million extension with them, with $72.2 million of the contract guaranteed. 

Adams and Hill are easily two of the top ten receivers in the NFL, but these two receivers alone are making a combined $261.25 million dollars. Yes they have the speed, good footwork to make plays and great hands to catch. However, Adams and Hill had Rodgers and Patrick Mahomes as their quarterback, who are top ten NFL quarterbacks.

Nothing against Derek Carr and Tua Tagovailoa, quarterbacks of the Raiders and Dolphins respectively, but they are a downgrade in quarterbacks. The numbers that Hill and Adams posted are in question of whether they can replicate the numbers they have put up in their careers.

This brings up Deebo Samuel, wide receiver and running back of the San Francisco 49ers. He has yet to make a decision whether he wants to sign a major extension with the team, keep the contract he is already under with the team or to be traded to sign elsewhere.

Samuel had an insane year in the 2021-22 NFL season. He played both wide receiver and running back, or as he called it a “wide-back,” and put up some eye opening numbers, even with Jimmy Garropolo at quarterback who was average at best.

 The issue with Samuel is prior to this season, while he did flash his capabilities, he had issues with injuries.

It isn’t guaranteed he can replicate the numbers he put up again all while staying healthy. To make matters worse, he no longer wants to play both a wide receiver and running back at the same time. We have yet to know the real reason as to why, but many speculate it’s because of the high chance of getting injured playing two different positions.

Unsurprisingly, Samuel wants to be paid a good amount of money whether he is a wide back or just a receiver. This caused a lot of rumors like whether or not Deebo wants to continue playing for the 49ers, if the 49ers see that he is worth the money he seeks, and a ridiculous amount of rumors of Deebo being traded during the NFL draft.

Deebo ended up not being traded during the NFL draft, so it is obvious that the 49ers want to work things out with him. But the domino effect that occurred ever since Christian Kirk signed his contract revealed that receivers are more for the money this offseason.

   Ironically, it was Trent Baalke, current General Manager of the Jacksonville Jaguars and formerly of the Niners, who gave the contract. So even when he isn’t with the Niners, he is still screwing them over.

It amazes me the contracts that receivers have been signing this offseason. It is to the point where teams are looking to draft receivers from college who are praised by scouts and hope they pan out than to sign proven receivers. 

AJ Brown had a similar scenario to Deebo Samuel. But since the Tennessee Titans didn’t want to pay him what he wanted, they traded him to the Philadelphia Eagles. He would then sign a 4-year $100 million extension with the Eagles and the Titans would draft receiver Treylon Burks to replace Brown with the pick they got from the Eagles for Brown.

The NFL is starting to face a problem with the contracts receivers are being paid. If contracts like these keep up, we will be seeing receivers being paid over $40 million a year a few years from now which is crazy to think. Something has got to give when it comes to teams and players when it comes to contract talks. When it comes to other positions, teams will be incomplete due to not being able to afford to pay said other players.