Four Corners: Who should be highest paid player in the NFL?

August 04, 2010

Answer is a Brees

Dave Hyde

Sun Sentinel

The highest paid player should be a quarterback because of the position's importance.

It should be a player who has carried his team to a Super Bowl title. It should be someone in the prime of talent because sports is about today. It also should be someone who defines his franchise to anchor it in the community.

Drew Brees, in other words.

Colts quarterback Peyton Manning fits all that criteria, of course. Ditto for the Patriots' Tom Brady. They're talking new contracts.

Brees just fits the ideal of the highest-paid player better. He's 31 — younger than Brady, 33, and Manning, 34. He has carried an offense. He defines his community. And, as of now, he's a bargain at the six-year, $60 million contract he signed in 2006.

Far and away Favre

Sam Farmer

Los Angeles Times

Without question it should be Brett Favre, and only partly because he's a great quarterback.

The real reason he's so valuable to the league is he can generate headlines — even eye-rollers — with his every hiccup.

As tiresome as this retirement tango has been, at least we're not talking about a player arrested for drugs, beating up his girlfriend, or the like.

Favre, who may or may not play for the Vikings this season, is a highly entertaining player who's headed for Canton. He's just taking the long way.

Manning gets the nod

Dan Pompei

Chicago Tribune

Tom Brady has the Super Bowl rings, Sam Bradford is the flavor of the day and John Kasay has the tenure, but none of them should be the highest paid player in the NFL.

That honor should belong to Peyton Manning, who is the most valuable player of his era and one of the greatest quarterbacks of all time.

Manning has made the Colts consistent Super Bowl contenders, and he is on pace to set almost every significant quarterback record.

You can make a good argument for Brady, and the truth is he's not far behind. But Manning, who makes more decisions at the line of scrimmage than any player in decades, does more for his team.

Super Bowl QBs

By Ken Murray

Baltimore Sun

Operating on the concept of "what have you done lately?," I think Drew Brees deserves to be the most richly rewarded player in the league. Bringing a Super Bowl title to the traditionally have-not Saints is his best argument, especially with a defense that often resembled a sieve.

That Brees also beat the game's best quarterback, Peyton Manning, and the Colts to get it simply underscores how much he deserves to be recognized as an elite player.

But I wouldn't have a problem giving the most money to Manning, either. Without him, the Colts are nothing. In fact, the best coaching job in the NFL is offensive coordinator with Indianapolis. You don't even have to call plays.

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