The 10 Highest Paid NFL Players in 2024

You won't believe how much money the top NFL contracts are paying annually!

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(Kim Hairston/The Baltimore Sun/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)

Saying that the highest paid players in the NFL make a lot of money would be about as groundbreaking of a statement as saying that the sky is blue. To be a player in the NFL requires the highest level of grit and determination, and the key players in the league are certainly compensated for their discipline.

Also unsurprisingly, most of the highest paid players in the NFL are quarterbacks -- in fact the position is responsible for all 10 of the top 10 highest paid players. This makes sense when you think about the fact that quarterbacks play in every single offensive snap and are not only players, but team leaders who are often as influential as the team's coach. With pressure that high, agents and the quarterbacks they represent do not settle for anything lower than what they are worth. Around the world we're seeing professional sports contracts reach new heights, and the NFL is no different. If you've ever watched even a couple of football games, you might have a guess about who the highest paid players in the NFL are, but let's see if you guessed right.

Related: The 15 Highest Paid Coaches in the NFL

All facts and statistics from Spotrac.

T-10. Daniel Jones: $40 Million

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  • Team: New York Giants
  • Position: Quarterback
  • College: Duke University
  • Years Active: 2019-Present
  • Accolades: N/A
  • Most Recent Contract: 4 Years, $160 Million (Signed in 2023)

Daniel Jones' time in the NFL has been nothing short of a rollercoaster and the highest point of the ride happened to come just in time for his contract renewal. Jones hitting his promising peak at the end of the 2022-2023 season coupled with the fact that the Giants were desperate to find their franchise quarterback resulted in a massive contract for the QB heading into the 2023 season.

Unfortunately, after going 1-5 to start the season, Jones suffered a torn ACL in Week 6 that would require season ending surgery and questions about what would happen after his 10 months of recovery. Needless to say, the Giants have to start asking themselves if their gamble to pay Jones will ever pay off, or if it's time to cut their losses and look for a new answer to their offensive struggles.

T-10. Matthew Stafford: $40 Million

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  • Team: Los Angeles Rams
  • Position: Quarterback
  • College: Georgia
  • Years Active: 2009-Present
  • Accolades: Super Bowl Champion (2021), 2x Pro-Bowl, NFL Comeback Player of the Year (2011)
  • Most Recent Contract: 4 Years, $160 Million (Signed in 2022)

As it tends to go in the NFL, all questions about whether Matthew Stafford should be offered a contract extention were abandoned after he led the LA Rams to a Super Bowl win in 2021. Shortly thereafter, Los Angeles and Stafford agreed to a contract that would keep him at the helm for at least another four years.

Also typical in the NFL, following their Super Bowl victory, the Rams offense fell asleep at the wheel in the following season, largely due to a neck injury for Stafford as well as other injuries of key players. In the games he did play, he didn't look like the Stafford from the 2020-2021 season, but after an alleged attempt to rework his contract (which he allegedly declined), LA decided to wait and see what the 2023-2024 season would bring.While it was not a Super Bowl season, Stafford helped propel the team with a late season push that was a promising way to end the year, even though it ended early in the NFC Wild Card Game.

T-10. Dak Prescott: $40 Million

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  • Team: Dallas Cowboys
  • Position: Quarterback
  • College: Mississippi State
  • Years Active: 2016-Present
  • Accolades: Offensive Rookie of the Year (2016), Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year (2022), 3x Pro-Bowl
  • Most Recent Contract: 4 Years, $160 Million (Signed in 2021)

Dak Prescott is one of the few quarterbacks in the top 10 highest paid that's at the end of his contract, though an extension is by no means out of the question. As frustrating as it may be for Dallas that the Cowboys have had little success in the form of Super Bowls or even playoff wins, at the end of the day Prescott is still a really good quarterback that has had some amazing seasons, including 2023 when led the NFL in passing touchdowns.

Still, given that the Cowboys have been unable to make much of their success in the regular season, the Dallas front office will certainly take its time weighing their options before committing to more time with Prescott.

9. Josh Allen: $43 Million

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  • Team: Buffalo Bills
  • Position: Quarterback
  • College: Wyoming
  • Years Active: 2018-Present
  • Accolades: 2x Pro-Bowl
  • Most Recent Contract: 6 Years, $258 Million (Signed in 2023)

Josh Allen and the Buffalo Bills are in many ways a match made in heaven. The Bills, a franchise with deep history and passion, would do just about anything to become a championship level team after many years of disappointing seasons. When Buffalo selected Allen seventh overall in 2018, the "Bills Mafia" was hopeful that the era they were longing for was finally here, and in some ways it has been. Since 2020, they have made the playoffs in four consecutive years, which is amazing given that the last time they played past the regular season before 2020 was 1995.

8. Patrick Mahomes: $45 Million

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  • Team: Kansas City Chiefs
  • Position: Quarterback
  • College: Texas Tech
  • Years Active: 2017-Present
  • Accolades: 3x Super Bowl Champion/MVP (2019, 2022, 2023), 2x NFL MVP (2018, 2022), 6x Pro-Bowl
  • Most Recent Contract: 10 Years, $450 Million (Signed in 2023

What is there to say about Patrick Mahomes that hasn't already been said? In just his seventh year in the NFL, he's already entered himself into conversations about being one of the best, if not the best, quarterbacks ever. Mahomes has racked up three Super Bowl championships and plenty of other awards and records along the way. All this to say, it's no wonder the Chiefs wanted to lock him into one of the longest and biggest contracts a quarterback has ever signed.

T-6. Deshaun Watson: $46 Million

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  • Team: Cleveland Browns
  • Position: Quarterback
  • College: Clemson
  • Years Active: 2017-2021, 2022-Present
  • Accolades: 3x Pro-Bowl
  • Most Recent Contract: 5 Years, $230 Million (Signed in 2022)

Despite some critics who may think that that Deshuan Watson should never have been offered a new contract in the first place following off-the-field controversies that had him suspended for a 11 games in 2022, the Cleveland Browns locked him in for five years in 2022. In the 2023 season, Watson only played in six games, so Cleveland must be questioning whether they made a mistake offering the controversial player such a large contract.

T-6. Kyler Murray: $46 Million

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  • Team: Arizona Cardinals
  • Position: Quarterback
  • College: University of Oklahoma
  • Years Active: 2019- Present
  • Accolades: 2019 Offensive Rookie of the Year, 2x Pro Bowl
  • Most Recent Contract: 5 Years, $230 Million

When the 2019 NFL Draft rolled around, the most talked about story was whether Heisman Trophy winner Kyler Murray would choose to go pro in football or baseball. He ultimately chose football and was selected by the Arizona Cardinals first overall.

He helped turn Arizona around, bringing them to the postseason and earning him a massive contract extension. Late into the 2021 season, Murray began to deal with some injuries including a torn ACL that stalled both his and the Cardinals progress. He returned halfway through the 2023 season, but recorded a bleak 3-8 record in the games he played in, though the Cardinals overall record was an even bleaker 4-13 on the season.

Will Kyler Murray's contract ever pay itself off? Only time will tell.

5. Russell Wilson: $48.5 Million

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  • Team: Denver Broncos
  • Position: Quarterback
  • College: University of Wisconsin
  • Years Active: 2012- Present
  • Accolades: Super Bowl Champion (2013), Walter Payton Man of the Year (2020), 9x Pro Bowl
  • Most Recent Contract: 5 Years, $242 Million (Signed in 2022)

Lest anyone forget, Russell Wilson is a Super Bowl winning quarterback who has had a number of exceptional years in his 11+ year career. Much of this success was seen during his years as QB1 for the Seattle Seahawks who traded Russ away to the Denver Broncos in 2022.

It was a rocky start for Wilson in Denver, and even after bringing new head coach Sean Payton to town, things continued that way before it started to seem like Wilson was finding his stride. Then, in the middle of the 2023 season, reports started to circulate that Denver gave Wilson an ultimatum to renegotiate his contract or face an unknown future that would start with him getting benched. All that progress came to a screeching halt as Wilson reportedly rejected the alleged proposition. As for what this means for Wilson's future in Denver? That much still remains unclear.

4. Jalen Hurts: $51 Million

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  • Team: Philadelphia Eagles
  • Position: Quarterback
  • College: University of Alabama
  • Years Active: 2020- Present
  • Accolades: 2022 Second-team All-Pro, 1x Pro-Bowl
  • Most Recent Contract: 5 Years, $255 Million (Signed in 2023)

Jalen Hurts may only be 25 and through his fourth season as an NFL quarterback, but has already secured the league's fourth largest contract. That's in large part due to his exceptional 2022 campaign. After leading the Eagles to the best record in the NFC, Hurts earned Pro-Bowl and second-team All-Pro honors. He used that momentum to help the Eagles make a run to the Super Bowl, which they ultimately lost.

Depending on who you ask, some might say that Hurts remains one of the youngest and brightest stars in the league today. Eagles fans, however, might be starting to think about what a future without Hurts could look like given his struggles this past season.

3. Lamar Jackson: $52 Million

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  • Team: Baltimore Ravens
  • Position: Quarterback
  • College: University of Louisville
  • Years Active: 2018-Present
  • Accolades: 2x NFL MVP (2019, 2023), 3x Pro Bowl
  • Most Recent Contract: 5 Years, $260 Million (Signed in 2023)

Many people questioned Lamar Jackson when he decided to become his own agent and negotiate his contract with the Baltimore Ravens this past offseason. No one is questioning him now after securing what was the largest contract in NFL history at the time. It didn't come without immense work on and off the field.

When Jackson first entered the NFL, many scouts didn't see him as a quarterback and wanted him to transition to a new position. He refused and found a home as the Ravens franchise QB, winning an MVP award in 2019 and is now once again the reigning NFL MVP.

2. Justin Herbert: $52 Million

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  • Team: Los Angeles Chargers
  • Position: Quarterback
  • College: Oregon
  • Years Active: 2020-Present
  • Accolades: NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year (2020), 1x Pro-Bowl
  • Most Recent Contract: 5 Years, $262.5 Million (Signed in 2023)

It's hard to summarize Justin Herbert's career, but if his contract is any indication, the expectations are very high. The 2020 Offensive Rookie of the Year was selected sixth overall by the Chargers in 2020 and was supposed to be a backup in his first season. However, an injury to starting quarterback Tyrod Taylor forced Herbert to quickly rise to the occasion and become QB1 in his rookie campaign.

Herbert will enter his fifth season in the NFL with lots of eyes on him as Jim Harbaugh is stepping in to take over the head coach position. Many think that an experienced coach like Harbaugh could be just what Herbert needs to reach his full potential.

1. Joe Burrow: $55 Million

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  • Team: Cincinnati Bengals
  • Position: Quarterback
  • College: LSU
  • Years Active: 2020-Present
  • Accolades: NFL Comeback Player of the Year (2021), 1x Pro-bowl
  • Most Recent Contract: 5 Years, $275 Million (Signed in 2023)

There were a handful of really good quarterbacks that entered the 2020 NFL Draft, but in the end it was Joe Burrow that was selected first by the Cincinnati Bengals. The former LSU star was expected to quickly be up to par with NFL quarterbacks when he was named the starter in 2020, and he did show promise pretty quickly in his rookie season. Unfortunately, injuries have plagued Burrow in varying degrees during his first years, most significantly in his rookie season when he tore his ACL in Week 11.

In just his second season and fresh off rehab from his season ending injury in 2021, Burrow led the team all the way to the Super Bowl, which they lost to Rams, but was an impressive showing for the young QB nonetheless. Bengals faithful are hoping that Burrow can stay healthy in the 2024 season and back to his dominant ways.

Who do you think will be the next player to make our highest paid NFL players list? Tweet us @137pm and let us know!

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