The Most Overpaid Offensive NFL Players of 2016
In the NFL, contracts are given out based on many different factors including past performance, future potential, tenure, and marketability. From those three main factors comes a player’s value, or worth, to a program.
However, since every NFL owner is different, these three main factors don’t always come into play. Sometimes, an owner might decide to make a decision to sign a player because another team wants him or because he would help sell tickets. The owner’s don’t have to explain their decisions, ever.
So even though most of the NFL contracts make sense, there are those that don’t, based on production. If a player isn’t performing to the level expected from the pay he is receiving, he will be considered overpaid. Here are the NFL’s Most Overpaid Offensive players for 2016.
QB – Colin Kaepernick, San Francisco 49ers
- Contract: 6-yr/$114 million
- ’16 Cap Hit: $15,890,753
- 2-Yr Win Total (Games): 10 (24)
- 2-Yr Statistical Look: 60.0%, 4,984 Yards, 25 TDs, 15 INTs (895 Rushing Yards, 2 TD, 13 Fumbles)
- Where’s the beef? This one speaks for itself. In his five seasons as the starter, mostly, in San Francisco, Colin Kaepernick has been amazing once, in 2013, when the 49ers defense carried them to the Super Bowl. Outside of that season, he has been a roller coaster of talent that has put him on the bench in 2015 and battling for playing time this year. He might have superior upside but he is not worth having the fifth highest contract in the NFL.
QB – Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons
- Contract: 5-yr/$103.75 million
- ’16 Cap Hit: $23.750 million
- 2-Yr Win Total (Games): 14 (32)
- 2-Yr Statistical Look: 66.2%, 9.285 Yards, 49 TDs, 30 INTs
- Where’s the beef? The Atlanta Falcons are constantly battling uphill when it comes to winning. Even when they head into a season as a heavy favorite, things never seem to come together. Matt Ryan was paid to bring a Lombardi trophy to the ATL and he has instead watched his career slowly fall apart as the organization continues to make head-scratching decisions. He might have talent but his contract takes away from their ability to sign anyone else that could help the team immediately.
RB – C.J. Spiller, New Orleans Saints
- Contract: 4-yr/$16 million
- ’16 Cap Hit: $4.5 million
- ’16 Positional Ranking: 79th
- 2-Yr Games Started (Games): 7 (22)
- 2-Yr Statistical Look: 412 Yards, 53 Rec, 364 Yards, 3 Total TDs
- Where’s the beef? What is going on in New Orleans? After the Saints signed C.J. Spiller last year, people started asking why instead of how. How would they be able to use him that would balance a non-existent running game? Sean Payton responded by almost never using him. His production is similar to a 3rd or 4th string RB but he is getting big time money sitting on the bench.
Editor’s Note : Before we could even publish this, Spiller was released.
RB – Ezekiel Elliott, Dallas Cowboys
- Contract: 4-yr/$24,956,341
- ’16 Cap Hit: $4,537,516
- ’16 Positional Ranking: 4th
- Where’s the beef? Didn’t the NFL fix this problem with the rookie caps on contracts? Even so, the Cowboys managed to work out a deal that gave Ezekiel Elliott the largest contract for a rookie RB since 2012. He is going to make almost double what Todd Gurley is earning in 2016. And he hadn’t even played a single down in the NFL.
RB – Jamaal Charles, Kansas City Chiefs
- Contract: 2-yr/$18.1 million
- ’16 Cap Hit: $5,312,500
- ’16 Positional Ranking: 6th
- 2-Yr Games Started (Games): 20 (20)
- 2-Yr Statistical Look: 1,397 Yards, 61 Rec, 468 Yards, 19 Total TDs
- Where’s the beef? As long as Jamaal Charles remains healthy, he is scary good, if not the best in the NFL. However, he tore his ACL last season, second time in his career, and now heads into the 2016 season hoping to be ready for the season. He turns 30 in December but has become more than fragile and a very risky investment for the Chiefs.
WR – Torrey Smith, San Francisco 49ers
- Contract: 5-yr/$40 million
- ’16 Cap Hit: $7.6 million
- ’16 Positional Ranking: 40th
- 2-Yr Games Started (Games): 28 (32)
- 2-Yr Statistical Look: 82 Rec, 1,430 Yards, 15 TDs
- Where’s the beef? Torrey Smith isn’t an overrated player by any means. He is just not worth $40 million especially now that he is in San Francisco where, until they have an undisputed starting QB named, he is going to not get many looks. The list of players that have outplayed him over the past two years is too long to list.
WR – Victor Cruz, New York Giants
- Contract: 5-yr/$43 million
- ’16 Cap Hit: $4.4 million
- ’16 Positional Ranking: 85th
- 2-Yr Games Started (Games): 18 (20)
- 2-Yr Statistical Look: 96 Rec, 1,335 Yards, 5 TD
- Where’s the beef? Over the past two seasons, the salsa dancing WR from New York has dealt with some ugly injuries that have fored him to miss 14 games over the past two seasons. He might be in for a rude awakening when he finally makes his return in 2016 now that the Giants have Odell Beckham Jr. and Sterling Shepard.
TE – Jimmy Graham, Seattle Seahawks
- Contract: 4-yr/$40 million
- ’16 Cap Hit: $9 million
- ’16 Positional Ranking: 16th
- 2-Yr Games Started (Games): 24 (27)
- 2-Yr Statistical Look: 133 Rec, 1,494 Yards, 12 TDs
- Where’s the beef? The New Orleans Saints fans went crazy when the news broke that the beloved Tight End, Jimmy Graham, was being traded to one of their most hated rivals, the Seattle Seahawks in 2015. Turns out, his inability to block or play the actual TE position has turned him into a poor investment by the Seahawks and the once stud TE is now ranked amongst the middle of the pack.
TE – Dennis Pitta, Baltimore Ravens
- Contract: 5-yr/$32 million
- ’16 Cap Hit: $3.2 million
- 2-Yr Games Started (Games): 4 (7)
- 2-Yr Statistical Look: 36 Rec, 294 Yards, 1 TD
- Where’s the beef? Dennis Pitta has only played in 7 games in two seasons but he is holding onto a contract that didn’t make sense when the Ravens gave it to him following his first injury. Now he looks like the odd man out in Baltimore with the future of the TE position in Maxx Williams, among many other potential starting TEs in Baltimore.
OT – Greg Robinson, Los Angeles Rams
- Contract: 4-yr/$21,284,098
- ’16 Cap Hit: $5,804,754
- Where’s the Beef? Greg Robinson has done just enough to not be considered a bust. He has struggled, however, to stay on a consistent path to greatness and ends up having good and bad games throughout the season. For the $21 million they are paying him, he needs to be more of a constant, rather than an enigma.
OG – Rodger Saffold, Los Angeles Rams
- Contract: 5-yr/$31,347,235
- ’16 Cap Hit: $5,656,250
- Where’s the Beef? It is hard to justify paying an offensive lineman in the NFL $30 million when he has missed 28 games over the past six seasons. Rodger Saffold has been around since 2010 and he is still a decent starting OG but when you are signing these types of contracts, you need to be better than decent.
C – Eric Wood, Buffalo Bills
- Contract: 4-yr/$25.4 million
- ’16 Cap Hit: $6.725 million
- Where’s the Beef? Nowhere apparently as Eric Wood followed the signing of his new contract by having the worst season of his career in 2014. Since then he has been hurting the Bills payroll more than he has been helping the running game. (No, that isn’t the boy from the Billy Bob Thornton raunchy comedy flick, Bad Santa.)