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Matt Ryan Trade: Contract & Salary Cap Breakdown

Last Updated: January 23, 2023
After an MVP award and an NFC title, the Falcons’ longtime franchise QB starts a new chapter as a Colt. Let’s go deep on the financial details of this week’s Matt Ryan trade.

It’s not every day that a former NFL MVP and Offensive Player of the Year gets traded away from the only professional home he’s ever known. But in keeping with this NFL offseason being unlike any other we’ve seen, Matt Ryan is leaving Atlanta.

Meet the next starting quarterback of the Indianapolis Colts, who themselves parted ways with Carson Wentz earlier this month in a trade with Washington. In exchange for a third-round pick, Indy welcomes its fifth different starting quarterback in as many seasons.

All told, it’s another big shakeup moment for the NFL. Let’s dive into the details of Monday’s Matt Ryan trade.

Click here to read Boardroom’s overview of the highest-paid quarterbacks in the NFL.

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Matt Ryan Contract Details & Salary

All dollar figures via Spotrac.

Length: 5 years
Total value: $150,000,000
Average annual value: $30,000,000
Guaranteed money: $100,000,000
Free agency: 2024 (potential out this offseason)

2022 salary: $23,750,000
2022 salary cap hit: $23,750,000
2022 dead cap: $40,525,000 (assumed by Falcons)

2023 salary: $28,000,000

Matt Ryan’s career NFL earnings through 2021: $267,007,749(No. 2 among active players; No. 4 all-time)

The latest buzz suggests that the Falcons weren’t spending the offseason talking all around town about intentions to trade Ryan. Rather, things escalated recently, and here we are.

It’s an unsightly $40+ million that the team will have to absorb on dead cap money even in parting ways with Ryan, but a look at the fine print indicates that the team would have eaten almost $50 million against the cap if they had kept him in town.

Ryan’s deal includes a $7.5 million roster bonus that became official on March 18. Combined with a $16,250,000 base salary, his official number is $23.75 million for his first season as a Colt.

In 2023, he’s in line to receive the same $7.5 roster bonus again, plus a base salary that escalates to $20.5 million, totaling $28 million even for his contract year.

Matt Ryan Trade Salary Cap Impact

As of March 21, 2022.

Indianapolis Colts

2022 salary cap space: $35,110,729
Active contracts: $170,976,205
Dead money: $6,813,066
Total salary cap usage:$177,789,271

Atlanta Falcons

2022 salary cap space: $13,562,473
Active contracts: $132,440,423
Dead money: $62,097,104
Total salary cap usage: $194,537,527

Colts-Falcons Matt Ryan Trade Details

Indianapolis Colts get:

  • QB Matt Ryan

Atlanta Falcons get:

  • 2022 third-round draft pick (No. 82 overall)

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About The Author
Sam Dunn
Sam Dunn
Sam Dunn is the Managing Editor of Boardroom. Before joining the team, he was an editor and multimedia talent for several sports and culture verticals at Minute Media and an editor, reporter, and site manager at SB Nation. A specialist in content strategy, copywriting, and SEO, he has additionally worked as a digital consultant in the corporate services, retail, and tech industries. He cannot be expected to be impartial on any matter regarding the Florida Gators or Atlanta Braves. Follow him on Twitter @RealFakeSamDunn.