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Aaron Rodgers tops the list of the NFL’s highest paid athletes in 2015

Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers will be the NFL’s highest paid player in 2015, with the 31-year-old set to earn $22,000,000 this year. His contract, which will see him play at Lambeau Field for another five seasons at the very least, is worth $110,000,000 total with $54,000,000 guaranteed. The Packers signal caller is arguably the greatest player in the National Football League and supporters will argue that he is certainly worth the extortionate money that Green Bay are willing to pay.

Green Bay, who were defeated by Seattle Seahawks in the NFC Championship game last season, are renowned for drafting well and only paying for the top players so this is a clear show of trust in Aaron Rodgers’ longevity and performance at the highest level. However, there are other quarterbacks who have secured lucrative long-term contracts that haven’t quite lived up to expectations yet. We take a look at some of the biggest deals in the NFL and give our thoughts on whether these players are deserving of their huge profits. For more NFL and sport news, click here.

Cam Newton ($20.8 million in 2015)

The Carolina Panthers made ‘Super Cam’ one of the top five highest-paid quarterbacks of all-time as they offered the signal caller a $103.8 million extension to his contract. The Panthers clearly rate Newton but he has struggled to convince some after a few poor performances – particularly last season. Newton’s deal will see him earn a guaranteed $60,000,000 over his five-year contract and, unless Carolina start to compete for NFC Championship titles, the quarterback is likely to take some flak throughout his career.

Matt Ryan ($20.75 million in 2015)

The Atlanta Falcons quarterback is a great player and is well worth his lucrative $103.75 million deal but his team can rely too much on ‘Matty Ice’ to win matches. The Falcons had one of the worst defences in the NFL last season and collapsed in a number of road matches, particularly in the crucial divisional fixtures. Under new head coach Dan Quinn – formerly Seattle Seahawks’ defensive coordinator – the Falcons will work on improving their defensive side of the game and Ryan could profit from this as Atlanta look to take the NFC South by storm.

Ndamukong Suh ($19 million in 2015)

The first non-quarterback on this list, Suh is a dominant defensive force and could go on to become an ever bigger threat in a fearsome looking Miami frontline. The former Detroit defensive tackle will earn a guaranteed $59,955,000 throughout his six years at the Dolphins but that total could be as high as $114,000,000 if he performs well. Many are tipping Miami to topple Super Bowl champions New England Patriots in the AFC East this year and Tom Brady won’t be relishing two meetings with Suh this season.

JJ Watt ($16.7 million in 2015)

The Houston Texans star has been phenomenal throughout the last two years in the NFL and will feel a little aggrieved to miss out on the regular season MVP award last season. Watt has established himself as a threat on both sides of the ball as he regularly lines up on offense and scored a number of touchdowns in the last campaign. With number one pick in the 2014 NFL draft Jadeveon Clowney regaining fitness, and free agent acquisition Vince Wilfork on the front line of defence, Houston boasts one of the best units in the NFL and Watt may have even more opportunities to make plays and disrupt opposing quarterbacks.

Calvin Johnson ($16.2 million in 2015)

Calvin Johnson, or ‘Megatron’ as he’s known, is the greatest wide receiver in the NFL and remains a potent threat for Detroit Lions. The five-time Pro Bowl wideout is capable of making unreal catches, sometimes in double or triple coverage. Johnson has teamed up with quarterback Matthew Stafford to form a dangerous duo over the past few seasons and, despite suffering a number of injuries last year, he will look to see out the remainder of his contract at Detroit. He is currently on a seven-year deal worth $113.45 million in total, with $48.75 million guaranteed. If he can regain his best form, the Lions will be serious players in the NFC North this campaign.