Justin Herbert is eligible for an extension this offseason and as one of the elite young quarterbacks in the league, many are expecting the LA Chargers to give him the bag. While there have been various different Justin Herbert contract projections, all of them include him getting paid big.
Herbert is not the only young quarterback that is extension eligible this offseason. Most notably, Joe Burrow and Jalen Hurts are also extension eligible and are in the same situation as Herbert in that they are going to help reshape the quarterback market.
The first of these three dominoes fell on Monday, as Hurts reportedly agreed to his extension with the Philadelphia Eagles. Hurts' new deal is for five years and is worth $255 million. It includes $179.304 million guaranteed and has a no-trade clause.
Philadelphia won the race and that is going to benefit the team moving forward. The Chargers and Cincinnati Bengals should be kicking themselves, as the first team that signed their star quarterback to a new deal is going to get the best price.
Chargers will have to pay more for a Justin Herbert extension
Each of these quarterbacks is attempting to reset the quarterback market this offseason and now Justin Herbert's agents have ammunition to use against the Chargers. They are 100% going to take Hurts' new deal to the negotiating table and are going to ask for something that is above his AAV so Herbert can reset the market.
Burrow's agents are going to do the exact same thing. If Burrow signs first, it will likely raise the price even higher for Herbert as that will be even more ammunition for his agents. The Chargers should be looking to get a deal done now before his AAV demands creep into the upper 50s.
Hurts is making $51 million per year and has 70.3% of his contract fully guaranteed. It is now the job of Herbert's agents to clear both of those numbers and they should be able to as the Chargers have no other option than to pay up.
Herbert does not have to clear both of those numbers by a lot, he just cannot get a deal that is less than Hurts' new deal. That is how the free-agent market has always worked with elite players continuing to reset the market every time they are due for a new deal.
Expect Herbert to get an AAV of around $53 million per year and his total guarantees to be around 72%. If he signs a five-year deal (which would be better for him as he could sign another massive extension in his prime) then that would amount to a $265 million payday with $190.8 million guaranteed.
If Burrow agrees to a deal in that ballpark before Herbert, then we could see his Herbert's asking price go up another $3-4 million per year.