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Brady, Manning watching a rookie?

Posted by Albert Breer  July 16, 2010 11:42 AM

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This is as far along as I can remember without a first-round rookie being signed, and the big one, of course, is Rams QB Sam Bradford.

Since the Patriots' first-rounder (Devin McCourty) went 27th overall, the result of Bradford's negotiations may not have a huge impact of the New England's rookie dealings. But in another way ... ESPN's Adam Schefter tweeted this morning that Bradford is likely to get $45-50 million guaranteed, which sounds outrageous, until you consider that 2009 No. 1 pick Matthew Stafford got $41.7 million guaranteed.

And you have to think that Tom Brady and Peyton Manning are both paying attention. Particularly Manning, since both he and Bradford (and Stafford, too) are represented by Tom Condon and Ben Dogra of CAA.

The assumption has long been that the Patriots and Colts would have to pony up around $20 million per year to get new commitments from their franchise quarterbacks, but the more relevant number is the guaranteed money. Since Eli Manning and Philip Rivers got close to $40 million guaranteed last summer, the thought has long been that the number above applied to Bradford ($45-50 million) would be the range in which Peyton Manning or Brady would be compensated in guaranteed dollars on a new deal. Should the rookie get it, the vets' cases in asking for that much become stronger.

What's interesting here, in applying those figures, is what the elder Manning and Brady would put on the line by suiting up for the 16-game 2010 season under their current contractual conditions. Manning is set to make $15.8 million in 2010, so absent a deal, the risk seems to be $29.2-34.2 million. Brady will make just $3.5 million, meaning his risk is a whopping $41.5-46.5 million in playing his deal out.

No matter how you want to look at it, that's a lot of dough to have on the line.

News, analysis and commentary from Boston.com's staff writers and contributors, including Zuri Berry and Erik Frenz.

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