How will Trevor Lawrence's contract impact other top QBs around the NFL?

With Tua Tagovailoa, Jordan Love and Dak Prescott all expecting new contracts, the Trevor Lawrence deal is the new Gold standard by which contracts will be judged.
Tua Tagovailoa addressing the media and discussing his contract status last week at the Miami Dolphins Mandatory Minicamp.
Tua Tagovailoa addressing the media and discussing his contract status last week at the Miami Dolphins Mandatory Minicamp. / Megan Briggs/GettyImages
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Last week Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa said that the "market is the market" and that he deserves to be paid in accordance with the market.

The market has now changed.

Those comments were uttered before Trevor Lawrence signed his bloated $275 million contract with the Jacksonville Jaguars on Thursday. Lawrence is now tied with Cincinnati's Joe Burrow for the highest paid player in the National Football League. Both players have an annual average value of $55 million per season, but Burrow has an additional $19 million in guaranteed funds.

Jared Goff of the Detroit Lions just negotiated a new deal this off season that will pay him approximately $53 million per season. Justin Herbert of the Los Angeles Chargers, who was selected one pick after Tagovailoa in the NFL Draft in 2020, averages $52.5 million per season where as Lamar Jackson of the Baltimore Ravens averages $52 million.

Tagovailoa's contract extension just got trickier. It's going to cost Miami more money.

Tagovailoa is a much better quarterback than Lawrence and should not be expected to take a penny less. In fact, he should be getting paid more based upon his statistics and what he means to his team. Tagovailoa has already said that no one should expect the Dolphins to get a hometown discount and that he is going to fight for every penny that he has coming to him.

Last season Tagovailoa finished as the top ranked passer in the NFL by amassing 4,624 yards and scattering 29 touchdowns to the likes of Tyreek Hill, Jaylen Waddle and Raheem Mostert. He had a passer rating of 101.1 and averaged 8.3 yards per attempt.

Lawrence, meanwhile, was far less spectacular. He finished with 4,016 yards and only threw for 21 scores versus 14 picks. He had a passer rating of 88,1 and averaged just over seven yards per attempt.

Those are pedestrian like numbers compared to Tagovailoa and the stats do not reflect that Miami made the playoffs the last two seasons whereas Jacksonville watched them on television last season after winning their division and a playoff game, the year before.

Tagovailoa lights up the field like a pinball machine and Lawrence, well, plays in Jacksonville.
Lawrence's durability became an issue last season when he suffered a string of late-season injuries that forced him to miss playing time. Tagovailoa, after suffering several concussions in 2022, played injury free football in 2023 and is leaner and more svelte heading into this season, according to head coach Mike McDaniel.

Look for Tagovailoa to sign a deal in excess of $55 million per season, possibly inching closer to becoming the first $60 million player in league history. His total package should be worth in excess of $300 million over five years. He will probably get at least $250 million of that guaranteed.

Miami Dolphins general manager Chris Grier must be cursing Lawrence's agent Jay Courier of MCG Sports, who negotiated the contract. Grier was dragging his feet all spring, while Jacksonville put in the work to get their top player signed. Grier will now pay the price and pay through the roof for Tagovailoa, who will once again, try to prove, that he is the best quarterback in the league and that he deserves to be paid like it.

I expect the Dolphins quarterback to get his money, but he is going to have to scratch and claw to get it. He might hold out of training camp, which might cost him some money in fines as he is under contract. However, he might be willing to lose $500,000 to gain an additional $20 million in his new contract.