That didn't take long.
Less than three week after news first broke of the $97.5 million, six-year contract extension that Eli Manning was to receive from the New York Giants, Philip Rivers has cashed in.
Len Pasquarelli of ESPN.com reports that the San Diego Chargers and Rivers, linked forever to Manning because of the trade the 2004 first-round draft picks were involved in, have reached terms on a $92 million, six-year extension. Rivers is to receive a little less than $38.5 million guaranteed. That's about $3.5 million more guaranteed than Manning received.
It's impossible to say what the next domino to fall will be when it comes to huge quarterback contracts, but Jay Cutler just moved one step closer to the front of the line. Cutler was amused when talking about Manning's deal during training camp, and no doubt has to be thrilled with the landfall for his former arch rival in the AFC West, Rivers. Now, he'll be looking for his bite at the apple.
The Bears have more than $20 million remaining in salary cap room for this season. It's a good idea to devote a large chunk of that to Cutler, who has three years remaining on his contract, with the idea that the CBA will eventually be worked out. By eating up a majority of the remaining camp room this season, the Bears would position themselves to be in excellent position under the cap moving forward. It's not a situation where they need to see how Cutler performs this season to get a deal done. He's going to be the quarterback for the long haul.