Colorado’s ENGLEWOOD — General manager George Paton claimed that the Denver Broncos’ objective was to sign the star quarterback to a long-term agreement ever since the team acquired Russell Wilson in a trade that changed the franchise’s trajectory this past March.
Paton and the Broncos succeeded in their aim on Thursday by agreeing to a five-year, $245 million agreement with Wilson that includes $165 million in guaranteed money.
In terms of guaranteed money, the megadeal ranks third in the history of the NFL, just behind quarterbacks Kyler Murray of the Cardinals ($189.5 million) and Deshaun Watson of the Browns ($230 million).
The Broncos have Wilson, 33, under contract for $296 million through the 2028 season. With two years left on his first contract with the Seahawks, Wilson will get an average salary of $49 million under the extension. Before the agreement takes effect, he will earn $24 million this season and $27 million the next year.
As he prepared to begin his 11th NFL campaign, Wilson expressed a desire to remain with the Broncos “for a long, long time, hopefully the remainder of my career,” echoing Paton’s aspirations for a long-term contract with Denver.
This past March, the Broncos acquired Wilson from the Seahawks in exchange for five draught picks, including two first-round picks and two second-round picks, and three players. They did this in an effort to improve their quarterback situation, which has been a mess ever since Peyton Manning retired in 2016.
The Walton-Penner group, led by Walmart heir Rob Walton, officially took over control of the organisation, which further improved the Broncos’ prospects of closing the deal with Wilson. The NFL owners formally authorised the group’s $4.65 billion acquisition of the Broncos on August 9.
The Broncos now have the richest ownership group in the NFL thanks to a group that also includes Carrie Walton Penner, Greg Penner, Melody Hobson, Condoleezza Rice, and Lewis Hamilton.
It is crucial to have a strong quarterback in this league, and joining this company with Russell in place is a huge asset for us, according to Penner, the current CEO of the Broncos.
Wilson, who has indicated he plans to continue playing for another 10 to 15 years, said the ownership group’s “energy” and “passion to winning” made him optimistic about the team’s future.
Only Peyton Manning has more career touchdown passes than Wilson (292), who has completed more in his first 10 NFL seasons than any other quarterback in league history (306). Only two players have thrown more touchdown passes than Wilson over the previous 10 years: Tom Brady (324) and Aaron Rodgers (317).
Wilson, who led the Seahawks to their lone Super Bowl victory in team history by defeating the Broncos in Super Bowl XLVIII during the 2014 campaign, has also had a successful NFL career. He had the most wins of any NFL player in his first 10 seasons with 113 victories as the starting quarterback (regular season and postseason combined).
When Denver travels to Seattle for Monday Night Football on Sept. 12, it will be sort of Wilson’s homecoming.
The Broncos have had 10 different starting quarterbacks over the previous six seasons, and they haven’t made the playoffs since winning Super Bowl 50. In 2020, the Broncos had an additional player, running back Phillip Lindsay, start a game.