This is a big deal.
No, not the five-year, $70 million extension that cornerback Patrick Peterson agreed to with the Cardinals Tuesday, though that’s pretty sizable.
The more important thing, though – at least from Seattle’s perspective – is Richard Sherman’s reaction to it.
When Sherman signed an extension with the Seahawks back in May, it made him the highest-paid cornerback in the league. At least it did for about a week.
That was until Joe Haden signed an extension with the Browns, which was a smidge bigger. Then again, Haden was a top-10 pick by Cleveland, someone who was already going to make more than $5 million in 2014.
The reality was that Sherman had more money added to his contract – what is called new money – than Haden did. Sherman got a larger raise.
Well, that deal has now been trumped by Peterson, whose contract is not only bigger, but so is his raise. Peterson’s new deal averages $14.01 million in new money, and that .01 is significant. Sherman’s averaged $14 million in new money.
That should eliminate any sliver of a doubt about who Peterson’s Tweet was aimed at Wednesday morning:
Yu mad bro!!!! LMAO😂😂😂😂😭
— Patrick Peterson (@RealPeterson21) July 30, 2014
Let’s overlook the spelling issue to say that is a pretty well-aimed fastball. But you didn’t think the velocity would keep Sherman from swinging, did you?
Can’t ever be too mad lmao… pic.twitter.com/ZHA28B9Tji
â€” Richard Sherman (@RSherman_25) July 30, 2014
There is a little bit of underlying importance here because we’ve now seen Sherman’s reaction to the reality that while he may very well still be the best cornerback in the league, he’s no longer the highest paid.
And Sherman’s reaction shows that money isn’t the ultimate measurement. That’s not to say it’s not meaningful or that it’s not significant.
But the fact of the matter is that it’s easier to get a bigger contract on a team that’s less talented. Specifically, if you’re on a team like Arizona that has a quarterback who’s not positioned for a big pay day, but rather playing out his current deal like Carson Palmer. Or a team like Cleveland that is choosing between Brian Hoyer and a rookie to start at cornerback.
As well as Sherman has played since he was chosen in the fifth round of the 2011 draft, he’s on a defense that includes the player regarded by most as the league’s best safety in Earl Thomas and a team that is preparing to mint quarterback Russell Wilson a year from now.
The fact that Sherman doesn’t need to point to his wallet to pull out a trump card should make everyone in Seattle smile.