Much like Flacco's deal.. or Brady's.. Rodgers deal will be structured so that it allows the cap hit yearly to be manageable and something that will be reworked in the future.
That is not minimizing the impacts those contracts will have on our future, but it will be more in the terms of exchanging a Woodson and Pickett for a Matthews and Raji in terms of consumed cap hit. Additionally, Ted has married this team to his more or less building through the draft approach.. so for that window to be pushed even more open again.. he has to hit again this draft for fill in pieces and Mike McCarthy and co need to continue to develop from the past two draft classes.
Looking around the league, almost every contender pass the Niners at the moment are having their windows adjusted more than ours. Maybe the Pats.
The nature of a flat cap and many teams pushing out cap hits over the past couple years. The Packers haven't done much of that.. and I don't expect much of it moving forward other than Rodgers.
The Packers have known these three players were coming up.. and entrust they have a plan to manage it and remain very much in the discussion for the Lombardi yearly.
This is a great thread, with a lot of good thoughts in here.
I was just thinking about this window, and what it is really. Rodgers is 29. Flacco signed a 6 yr $120M deal. We also have Matthews and Raji figuring into a pretty big payout amongst just these 3 players.
Maybe Ted wants to throw an enormous SB at one or all 3 of these players to minimize cap figures going forward, and is willing to not play at all in FA, and essentially take a shot with draft development players only this season to help offset this cost.
Maybe the window is open just a crack this year, and he gambles on that by getting all three signed, with huge sums of their contracts absorbed through gigantic signing bonuses paid out in one season, playing essentially with only his drafted and current players.
That window may open far wider than ever next season, by being a good cap position, in a year where the cap increases. Front loading as much as he can this year and taking a flyer on the season, with no big FA expenditures, could work in our favor for years to come, and I wouldn't mind it if this is Ted's plan.
My own zeal to win now, and for Ted to load up in FA for a SB run this year may be seriously unrealistic for our future, especially considering what BAL had to do to make Flacco's deal work:
"In 2013, Flacco will get a fully-guaranteed $29 million signing bonus and a $1 million base salary. In 2014, he's due a $15 million option bonus (guaranteed for injury) and a $6 million base salary. In 2015, it's a $7 million option bonus (guaranteed for injury) and a $4 million base salary. In 2016, he will earn an $18.2 million base salary. In 2017, the base salary increases to $20.6 million, and in 2018, it's a $20 million base." http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap1000000146725/article/joe-flaccos-ravens-contract-includes-52m-guaranteed
Ted's task is essentially to build Mario Williams & Joe Flacco-type contracts into our scale, and that's just considering Rodgers and Matthews. I'm afraid loading up, after considering this more, may not be an option. Taking the hit now and saying we are just going to offload as much high dollar contracts as possible could actually give us a more opportunities in the future. That's all banking on Rodgers playing well at age 31, 32, 33, 34, 35...
So, yeah, maybe the window is closing this year.