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Who Secured Himself the Biggest Bag in the NFL Playoffs So Far?

Last Updated: January 21, 2023
From Jalen Hurts to Joe Burrow to Daniel Jones and beyond, our NFL Playoff predictions pivot to which contract extension candidate’s stock is rising highest.

Super Wild Card weekend around the NFL provided three days of thrills, comebacks, breakout performances, and inevitable recriminations from Chargers fans furiously trying to figure out whom they can sue.

And while it’s hard to imagine a football slate oozing with more narrative than what we just witnessed, strap in. The Divisional Round is here, and with the stakes even higher, a pair of Saturday-Sunday doubleheaders is guaranteed to delight, perplex, and invigorate.

Unless you hate Brock Purdy, which… shoot, we wouldn’t even know where to begin. The kid is such a national treasure that Nic Cage is plotting to steal him.

With that in mind, we reconvened our GRIDIRON ROUNDTABLE — Shlomo Sprung, Anthony Puccio, Brett Pickert, Chuck McMahon, and Sam Dunn — to discuss the Boardroomiest subplots of this second phase of the playoffs:

  1. Which player’s Wild Card performance made himself the most money this offseason?
  2. Which still-alive QB gets the biggest contract extension: Jalen Hurts, Joe Burrow, or Daniel Jones?
  3. Pick the team whose Super Bowl odds present the best value — and the worst.

As our NFL Playoff predictions roll on, it’s time to get Divisional.

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In the Wild Card Round, which player made himself the most money this offseason?

SHLOMO SPRUNG: We should start calling Daniel Jones “Danny Dollars” instead of “Danny Dimes” the way he’s increasing his value. He’s moving the ball without turning it over, the biggest key to the Giants’ surprising success despite having a roster whose success far outpaces its talent. Honorable mention to Brock Purdy, who’s playing so well that he’ll earn a much larger bag when he’s eligible in two years’ time, either from the 49ers or another team — one that ought to be more than happy to acquire and extend him if San Francisco still thinks Trey Lance is the future at QB.

ANTHONY PUCCIO: I’d say Saquon Barkley, but RBs don’t get paid much compared to other position players, thus my pick is Daniel Jones, as I predicted in our first playoff column. He played the most composed game of his career when it mattered most.

Now, the guy who lost the most money (and job)? It has to be Cowboys kicker Brett Maher, right?

BRETT PICKERT: I know the rules say he’s not able to get paid this offseason. I know. But Trevor Lawrence made himself the most money this past weekend, period. He’s a No. 1 pick that won a playoff game against Justin Herbert and the Chargers after being down 27!

This league overvalues QBs; that combined with the salary cap increasing equals a huge contract for the Clemson product a year from now.

CHUCK McMAHON: A two-touchdown performance in his team’s win over the Bucs in the Wild Card Round has Dallas TE Dalton Schultz firmly in the conversation. If Schultz’s dominance continues throughout the playoffs, Jerry Jones had better be ready to open the checkbook for the tight end in the form of a long-term contract extension. Schultz, who is currently making $10.9 million on the franchise tag, boasts a Spotrac market value of roughly $15.1 million annual average salary, so giddy up, Cowboy fans.

SAM DUNN: Brock Purdy, but specifically in endorsement money from any number of high-end cosmetics brands. In terms of this offseason’s actual free agents and extension candidates, I’ll take Geno Smith. His free agency had been shaping up to be equal parts trendy and intriguing, but another solid performance even in defeat — despite surely knowing that his Seahawks were overmatched on the road against the 49ers — was solid confirmation that his surprise Pro Bowl year wasn’t a fluke.

Which QB gets the biggest extension: Jalen Hurts, Joe Burrow, or Daniel Jones?

AP: Probably Joe Burrow. I would have said Jalen Hurts given his MVP-caliber season, but as of this writing, he hasn’t won a playoff game (yet). Burrow’s already won big games, been to the Super Bowl, and shown that he’s a top QB in the NFL.=

CM: Joe Burrow’s window is wide open, and the Bengals best be ready to pay the man. The 26-year-old QB picked up right where he left off from last year’s run to Super Bowl, leading his team to another stellar season and now another postseason appearance. It really doesn’t matter if he can lead his team past Buffalo in the Divisional Round — Burrow has become the man in Cincinnati, and will likely enjoy a huge contract extension in his first year of eligibility.

SD: The real answer may be Trevor Lawrence, but he’s not eligible for another year. Among this trio, give me Jalen Hurts — he’s the youngest, doesn’t have a torn ACL in his history like Burrow, and doesn’t have being Daniel Jones in his history like Daniel Jones.

SS: Joe Burrow has proven not just health, but durability — and the ability to win multiple road playoff games. A win at Buffalo this weekend is only going to magnify the legend of Joe Cool.

BP: Joe Burrow will sign the biggest extension. No matter what happens this postseason, he already has a Super Bowl appearance and an undefeated record (3-0) against the Chiefs and Patrick Mahomes.

Which team’s odds to win the Super Bowl present the best/worst value?

Betting odds via FanDuel Sportsbook as of Jan. 20, 2023. All odds are subject to change.

CM: The San Francisco 49ers at +450 represent the best value to win the whole damn thing. With both the Chiefs (+300) and Bills (+330) as the clear favorites in the AFC, the Niners are the NFC favorite and boast the next-best odds at hoisting the Lombardi Trophy — and don’t even think about taking Duuuval at +3300. Sure, those odds are tempting, but the Jags just aren’t Super Bowl-bound this year.

SD: Cowboys at +850. Missed kicks notwithstanding, the way they suffocated TB12 and the Bucs on the road ought to be taken as a shot across the bow by the rest of the league.

The worst value goes to the Bills (+330), who still lack the Chiefs’ ruthlessness when it comes to putting teams away and making an example out of them despite their odds being almost identical. Of course, in my officially official NFL Playoff predictions, I’m still leaning towards them winning it all, but the bang for the betting buck isn’t there.

SS: People are still sleeping on Cincinnati at +750. Would it shock you if the Bengals beat the Bills? If they do, Cincy already beat Kansas City this season — do the math.

Burrow and Co. are undervalued right now as a team that can realistically win it all. The Chiefs are favored to win it all and definitely could, but +300 isn’t really doing it for me right now in terms of value.

BP: The best value is the 49ers (+450) due to the apparent uncertainty around Brock “BCB” Purdy. The Niners are on a roll and appear to be unstoppable. So, can a third-string, last-pick-of-the-draft QB actually win a Super Bowl? I’ll take a flier.

AP: Best value — Bengals at +750. Last year was no fluke and for whatever it’s worth, Cincy was one of three to beat the Chiefs this season. Cannot sleep on those guys.

Worst value? Bills at +330. Don’t get me wrong, I think these guys can win it all but I’m a little skeptical — seven of their last 10 games have been determined by a TD or less — specifically against the Dolphins, who had zero business almost taking down the AFC East champs with Skylar Thompson at QB. Beat the Bengals and maybe I’ll change my mind, but I think I’d rather go with the Chiefs (+300) at that point, 49ers at +500, or Bengals at +750.

Click here to read Boardroom’s FanDuel-powered NFL Playoff predictions for every matchup of the Divisional Round.

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