What Does Drew Brees' Deal With Saints Mean For Romo?

That Earth-destroying asteroid was successfully veered off course on Friday, when the New Orleans Saints agreed to a five-year contract with quarterback Drew Brees.

The Super Bowl XLIV MVP, who set a record for passing yards last season, will make $40 million in 2012 and gets $60 million guaranteed over the first three years of the deal, which would be worth $100 million total if Brees is with the Saints through 2016.

It's a lot of money, but it's also the going rate at the game's most highly-compensated position. As much as Brees means to New Orleans, the contract seems quite justified.

And without squinting too much, it's easy to see some local implications. The Cowboys' own franchise quarterback, Tony Romo, has two years left on his contract, which is set to balloon dramatically in 2013, reason to believe the club could seek to extend Romo in the relatively near future.

With some extra cap money in place for 2012 - and considering they will still have a $5 million cap penalty for 2013 - it would make sense for the Cowboys to attempt to get Romo's financial situation in line before too long.

If Brees, who is only about nine months older than Romo, can average $20 million per year through his age 37 season, what sort of cash can Romo expect to make on his next contract, barring a serious injury or sudden wobble in his production?

Romo's previous contract, a six-year deal signed in 2007, averaged over $11.2 million per year. He's older now, but he's also more proven.

He probably won't get the kind of money Brees did, because he isn't as accomplished. And he may not get the kind of deal the Broncos gave Peyton Manning - five years, $96 million. Of course, Manning is already four years older than Romo.

Romo should make more than New York Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez, who in March signed a three-year extension worth about $40.5 million, an average annual value of roughly $13.5 million.

Most likely, the value of Romo's next deal will fall somewhere in between.

It's probably fair to expect Romo to average about $17 million, though there will certainly be some give and take between the two sides, and the proper length of the deal is a good question.

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