The Buffalo Bills broke the bank on Friday by extending their star quarterback for six years and $258 million. The team announced the blockbuster deal that will keep Josh Allen signed through 2028.
The length and amount of money ensure the Buffalo Bills are making a big bet that Allen’s breakthrough 2020 season is a sign of things to come. The former first-round pick showed remarkable improvements in virtually every statistical category last year.
The money is eye-popping but securing top quarterbacks in the NFL always costs a lot. Allen threw for 4,544 yards and 37 touchdowns last season, while also adding 421 yards and eight scores on the ground.
In today’s NFL, the Wyoming product is the kind of dual-threat a team covets at quarterback. The Buffalo Bills think they have found their franchise signal-caller and are pushing all-in on him. General manager Brandon Beane was pleased to get the deal done with Allen.
"“He’s been everything that we thought and then some. It’s an exciting moment for him and for our franchise,” said Beane to reporters. “It’s a relief … to know this organization has what we believe is the right guy in place for the next eight years.”"
The seventh overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft put up dazzling numbers last year. More importantly than that, he guided the Buffalo Bills to a 13-3 record and AFC Championship appearance. The 2020 version of the Bills scored more points than any offence in franchise history.
Breaking down the deal made between the Buffalo Bills and Josh Allen
The money being paid to Allen is staggering on the surface but is not that surprising for a quarterback in the NFL. Each deal for franchise-caliber pivots seems to top the previous one.
The base value of the contract is $258 million over six years ($43 million average). It could maximize to $288 million if certain metrics are hit, according to Pro Football Talk. The deal includes $150 million in guaranteed money, per Spotrac.
The $43 million annual average only trails Patrick Mahomes in the league. Mahomes certainly has the better resume at this point, but Allen is in the upper echelon of quarterbacks now.
Since the Bills had Allen already under contract in 2021 and a fifth-year option in 2022, this essentially becomes an eight-year pact. Over those eight seasons, the Bills will be paying their star quarterback $288 million, an average of $36 million annually.
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Joe Buscaglia of The Athletic pointed out that getting Allen inked now solves several potential future issues for the Bills.
- It brings Allen’s cap hit down by $7 million in 2022 and likely avoids cutting someone they may not have wanted to let go of.
- The NFL salary cap is expected to make a large jump in 2023, which may make this contract look like a steal at that point.
- The Bills beat other teams to the punch in extending 2018 quarterback draft picks – most notably the Baltimore Ravens with Lamar Jackson and the Cleveland Browns with Baker Mayfield. The team does not have to worry about what those players get in a deal. They set the market and other teams will now have to follow.
There is risk in any contract of this size, and Allen took a mammoth leap last season. Buffalo is counting on more of the same from the man who was fourth or better in all of Football Outsiders passing metrics in 2020.
It has been a while since Jim Kelly led the Buffalo Bills to four straight Super Bowl games. With this contract, team management is betting Allen will lead them back again.
What do you think of the Josh Allen mega-deal with the Buffalo Bills? Will he live up to the massive amount of money? Let us know in the comments below.