• Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes is the highest earning player in the NFL, with a contract worth $45 million (£32.8m)

  • The 10 highest paid players in the league are all quarterbacks – the QB role is easily the most lucrative position in American football

  • All NFL active roster players are guaranteed to make $610,000 (£444,000) after the league approved a Collective Bargaining Agreement in 2020

The National Football League is the gold standard when it comes to American football. If you are good enough, the NFL is where you’ll end up – and you can make a LOT of money.

All 32 NFL teams have a salary cap and it is up to the organisation’s General Manager to try and find a way to build the best possible roster while adhering to financial regulations.

Despite those strict restrictions, some players are worth paying for. If you’re familiar with NFL odds, you’ll know all about Patrick Mahomes, Aaron Rodgers and Russell Wilson.

Quarterback is the highest paid position in the NFL – and it isn’t even close. In fact, the 11 best paid players in the league are signal callers…

The best QBs can defy

odds to win a game and that is why they are paid the big bucks. If you make it as an NFL quarterback, you’re doing well for yourself.

However, every NFL player earns a decent salary. The 2020 Collective Bargaining Agreement guarantees a minimum wage of $610,000 per year – kickers are people too, remember!

Without further ado, it’s time to look at the highest paid players in the NFL. We’ve decided to show NFL salary figures by position as to highlight the difference in contracts across any given roster.

Highest Paid NFL Quarterbacks:

Widely regarded as the most important position in the sport, NFL quarterbacks generally earn more money than most of their teammates.

Some of the highest paid quarterbacks appear on the Super Bowl winners list while others will have their day in the sun in the coming years.

Here, we breakdown the top paid QBs in the NFL – starting with the highest paid player across the entire league, Patrick Mahomes.

Player Team Contract Value Average Annual Salary
Patrick Mahomes Chiefs $450m $45m
Josh Allen Bills $258m $43m
Dak Prescott Cowboys $160m $40m
Deshaun Watson Texans $156m $39m
Russell Wilson Seahawks $140m $35m
Jared Goff Lions $134m $33.5m
Aaron Rodgers Packers $134m $33.5m
Kirk Cousins Vikings $66m $33m
Carson Wentz Colts $128m $32m
Matt Ryan Falcons $150m $30m

Highest Paid NFL Running Backs:

Running backs can earn decent money but are often undervalued compared to other positions – especially given their usage over the course of an NFL season.

A three-down bell cow will command the most lucrative contracts while running backs who are used primarily on third down will be on much smaller deals.

Unsurprisingly, Carolina Panthers star Christian McCaffrey is the highest paid running back in the NFL while the likes of Alvin Kamara and Ezekiel Elliott aren’t far behind…

Player Team Contract Value Average Annual Salary
Christian McCaffrey Panthers $64.1m $16m
Alvin Kamara Saints $75m $15m
Ezekiel Elliott Cowboys $90m $15m
Dalvin Cook Vikings $63m $12.6m
Derrick Henry Titans $50m $12.5m
Nick Chubb Browns $36.6m $12.2m
Aaron Jones Packers $48m $12m
Joe Mixon Bengals $48m $12m
Melvin Gordon Broncos $16m $8m
Saquon Barkley Giants $31.2m $7.8m

Highest Paid NFL Wide Receivers:

Regarded as the most important skill position outside of the quarterback role, the average salary for a wide receiver has accelerated as the NFL has developed into a passing league.

The highest paid wide receiver is DeAndre Hopkins and he is the 14th top earning player in the National Football League, averaging $27.3 million per year.

Hopkins will look to take the Arizona Cardinals – a popular selection in NFL picks straight up this year – deep into the playoffs as he looks to justify their investment.

Player Team Contract Value Average Annual Salary
DeAndre Hopkins Cardinals $54.5m $27.25m
Julio Jones Titans $66m $22m
Keenan Allen Chargers $80.1m $20.025m
Amari Cooper Cowboys $100m $20m
Michael Thomas Saints $96.25m $19.25m
Tyreek Hill Chiefs $54m $18m
Kenny Golloday Giants $72m $18m
Odell Beckham Jr Browns $90m $18m
Allen Robinson Bears $17.9m $17.9m
Tyler Lockett Seahawks $69m $17.25m

Highest Paid NFL Tight Ends:

The current crop of tight ends might just be the best in NFL history and there is now an element of glamour to the position.

With the likes of Rob Gronkowski and Travis Kelce lighting up the league each week, it isn’t a huge surprise to see the average NFL tight end salary soar over the last few years.

Who is the top paid tight end in the NFL? That award goes to San Francisco 49ers star George Kittle – though his average salary may be surpassed sooner rather than later.


Highest Paid NFL Kickers:

We said it before and we’ll say it again – kickers are people too. Often regarded as the most reliable player on an NFL roster, kickers are under as much pressure as quarterbacks.

Faced with making a last gasp field goal with seconds remaining, the best NFL kickers are the ones who stay cool under pressure and they more than earn their weekly wage.

Readers probably won’t be surprised to hear that Justin Tucker, record holder of the longest field goal in NFL history, is the highest paid kicker in the league… 


Highest Paid NFL Punters:

Not the most glamorous position in football, the role of an NFL punter is simple: to punt the ball as far down the field as possible without going into the opposing endzone.

Some punters are aggressive, others are more conservative. However, the top special teams units in the NFL make a huge difference over the course of a season.

Here, we look at the best paid punters in the NFL this year. According to Overthecap, Seattle Seahawks punter Michael Dickson is currently the highest earning NFL punter.


Highest Paid NFL Defensive Ends:

The main task for a defensive end is to sack the quarterback – speed, strength and stamina are three traits required to earn the big bucks at the position.

Myles Garrett, Joey Bosa and T.J. Watt are the highest paid defensive ends in the National Football League and the trio combined for 34.5 sacks in the 2020 season.

The best paid position on the defensive side of the ball, a top tier edge rusher can be the key to success at the highest level of the sport.



Alex is a sports betting tipster, specialising in Premier League football, the Champions League and horse racing.

He loves placing a weekly accumulator on the football at the weekend and dreams of landing the big winner that will take him back to Las Vegas.

As well as writing sports betting tips for 888sport since 2015, Alex has produced content for several international media companies, such as Goal.com and The SPORTBible.