The fifth-year option and Josh Rosen

Posted by Darren Urban on May 2, 2018 – 1:14 pm

The fifth-year team option for NFL teams for their first-round draft picks is always an interesting proposition, and it’s at the forefront of league topics right now since Wednesday is the deadline for team’s to figure out their choice for the 2015 draft picks. The Cardinals already made their call, exercising the option for tackle D.J. Humphries. It’s also part of the story for new first-round pick Josh Rosen, with whom the Cards will have a fifth-year option in 2022.

The Cardinals usually use their option, which began in 2011 after the new collective bargaining agreement came to pass. Of all their first-round picks since then that have come up for the option, the only time the Cards didn’t use it was on guard Jonathan Cooper (who was actually traded to New England for Chandler Jones before the option deadline arrived in 2016.) Patrick Peterson, Michael Floyd, and Deone Bucannon have all had their rookie deals extended to that fifth season — which does jump a player’s salary a good amount depending on their position and draft slot, but does keep the player from free agency another year.

Rosen’s case in a few years will be interesting. As noted in Kyle Odegard’s story today, finding a rookie quarterback to use is the best way for a team to build up its roster because the rookie wage scale makes a QB much cheaper — and there is more room under the cap to get players elsewhere. That’ll be the first four years. Former agent and cap expert Joel Corry does estimate that by 2022, assuming a similar climb in the salary cap, Rosen’s 2022 fifth-year option will be north of $25 million.

If Rosen is the real deal, there is no question the fifth-year option will come into play. (Next year, with Robert Nkemdiche, would seem to come down to his 2018 work.) Because of the timing — and because a player cannot get a contract extension or a new deal until he has played three years in the league — chances are good that Rosen will be optioned. But the Cards might make sure he gets a new deal before it ever kicks in. If Rosen is the player they hope he is.

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24 Responses to “The fifth-year option and Josh Rosen”

  1. By Eric G on May 2, 2018 | Reply

    You know, I login to this site at least once an hour to double check that the Cardinals did, in fact, draft Josh Rosen and that I’m not crazy. I still can’t believe it. Never thought this would happen after the season ended, a month ago, a week ago or Wednesday last week. It wasn’t until Mike Mayock released his mock draft showing Rosen sliding that I thought it was a remote possibility. Even then, I still think I was more delusional than pragmatic in thinking the Cardinals had a shot at Rosen. Still, did this really happen?

    Based on everything I’ve read and seen about Rosen, combined with how Michael Bidwill has really changed the culture of the Cardinals, it truly leads me to believe that the Cardinals will win a Superbowl in the next 5 years. I think Rosen leads us to three Super Bowl wins. I am truly hopeful that the first one is next year and that Larry Legend plays and gets the ring he rightfully deserves. I can see Larry Legend playing for 3 more years, including next year.

    I’m not crazy, right? (and my fiance has no say in this matter).

  2. By D on May 2, 2018 | Reply

    Kid hasn’t taken a snap yet in the NFL and fans believe/hope he unseats Sam in preseason. Sam should give AZ a better chance to win in 2018 than a Rookie but there has been a few recent exceptions in NFL history-

    The top 5 Rookie performances in the NFL as a QB All time-

    1) 2004–Big Ben. Played in 14 games. 66.4% Comp rate, 17 TDs, 11 picks. Led the Steelers to the AFC Championship Game in which they lost.

    2) 2012–RG3. Played in 15 games. 65% Comp rate, 20 TDs, 5 picks. Led Skins to NFC East title. (impressive stats)

    3) 2011–C. Newton. Played in 16 games. 60% Comp rate, 21 TDs, 17 picks. Panthers finished 6-10.

    4) 2012- R. Wilson. Played in 16 games. 64% Comp rate, 26 TDs, 10 picks. Seachickens finished 11-5.

    5) 1983–D. Marino. Played in 9 games. 58% Comp rate, 20 TDs, 6 picks
    Led Dolphins to the SB.

    After reading the Card’s fans post, most believe Rosen will be as good as Big Ben, RG3, C. Newton and R. Wilson as a Rookie. Those are Huge Shoes/Expectations for a Rookie QB with a New/Reconstructed O-line. DJ and the Defense will need to play lights out in 2018 and have minimal injuries to come close to the top 5 teams listed above.

  3. By JTDG on May 2, 2018 | Reply

    Eric G,

    What you are feeling is HOPE.

    Finally, the cards drafted a QB in round 1 to go with a new coach and OC. This is something they have never done since Plummer. This is something that can be built upon. Fans can see it.

    Leinart came in, had a decent rookie year and his coach was fired and a new system was brought in. That isn’t happening here. The system the cards are running is tailored to Rosen. How can you not be excited about the prospects.

    This supposedly playoff team went 15-16-1 over the last two years. Bradford represents Boomer Eiasion, Dave Brown, Derek Anderson, Kent Graham, Dave Kreig, Jay Schredor, Jeff Blake, and yes, Kurt Warner and Carson Palmer.
    All guys who had success but were on the backside of their careers or trying to revive something. We hit with Warner for 3 years, then it was over. We hit with Carson for really two years, as injuries in 2014, 2016, 2017 robbed him of success.

    Bradford is more of the same. But then something happened. The Browns amazingly took Mayfield , causing a domino effect, allowing Rosen to drop. Now we have a guy who could be around for the next 15 years.

    Finally, we don’t have to watch college football wondering if we could land that QB of the future. We have him.

    D, keeps pointing out rookie QBs don’t win. Who cares!! This team , again was 15-16-1. They aren’t a superbowl team in 2018. They sure as heck aren’t winning one with Bradford.

    But a RT, a LB, a CB2 (of course), another receiver, either drafted or FAs, and Larry coming back, yes, they could win it all in 2019 , But the best part, they can now win in 2020, 2021, 2022 and beyond.

    As soon as the Rams knock out Bradford in week two, and Glennon mops up. Let Glennon take the shots against the Vikings pass rush and the Broncos with Chubb and Von Miller, then in week 8, at home, vs the Niners, let the Josh Rosen era begin.

    Think of the excitement going into the 2019 offseason with 61 million in cap after Bradford and Iupati are gone, and a draft where we don’t need a QB.
    I’ll take it on the chin in 2018 for a 2019 that can win it all.

  4. By Cactus jeff on May 2, 2018 | Reply

    Good point D. However, Rosen was the best QB in this years draft class And Nick Foles won the super bowl! Anything can happen if the team stays healthy.

  5. By creditcard on May 2, 2018 | Reply

    Glad to the NFL is changing the kick-off rules. I am not certain if the kicker can take a few strides before kicking the ball,or if the kicker kicks the ball from a stationary position.

    This ruling may reduce the constant touchbacks into a thing of the past. Plus, no more wedge blockers and 8 players w/i 10 or 15 yards from the line of scrimmage.

    This will cause smaller more agile players on the field, and bring back a little excitement for what used to be an exciting play,but in recent years was very perfunctory.

    Sounds like more entertaining and safer for the players. Cardinals could very well be a team,that could capitalize on this ruling more than other teams with kickoff weapons of DJ,Logan, Kirk, Edmonds,and Peterson all with excellent return resumes.

  6. By Dan Nicholson on May 3, 2018 | Reply

    This is the bread & butter of NFL teams, getting a rookie qb with a option. So, the cards get their qb with a much better cap space to keep players on current roster & impact Fa’s. I am already tired of this exec said this, so & so said this about Rosen, put your name to it & don’t hide under your keyboard. Alonzo Highsmith , you took the Big pie in the face for remarks. That was really contradictory considering Mayfields past, but as JTDG said weeks before the draft , the Brown’s could be the Brown’s & a qb could fall to big red. Can’t wait for Rosen to prove them all wrong.We got your back Rosen.

  7. By LadyBird04 on May 3, 2018 | Reply

    For me the first test for Rosen (as a fan) will be how he behaves on the sidelines during games. I shudder remembering Leinart sitting about 5′ away from everyone else, either staring at the ceiling or head bowed admiring his fingernails, while Kurt, Coaches and other qb’s were going over plays or even on the field. He was totally disinterested if he wasn’t IT. I want to see Josh conferring with Sam, coaches and other qb’s while on the sideline and also being involved/interested in how the offense is doing even if he isn’t on the field.

    I so want Rosen to succeed, the Cardinals to succeed, but I’m still hoping really hoping, Rosen is all in for the TEAM. Glad to see his tweet about Holly Hugs so that is a good sign.

    Holly Hugs to All.

  8. By faster on May 3, 2018 | Reply

    if any of our qbs play behind a oline with stats like last year, he is dead meat at the end of the season.

    and, i give not a fig for rosen playing this year, first the coaches should get the oline klicking, and then he has to learn how to beat a healthy bradford.

    by the way, some 5years options are not exercised, maybe with some 7 round picks we could add deepth at the oline, for example tomlinson, ogbuehi, peat or flowers will likely want to change their colours.

  9. By D on May 3, 2018 | Reply

    I agree with you JTDG, going into 2019 offseason with Cap space to resign DJ and hopefully Golden, entering the draft without looking for a QB will pave the way for them to complete filling holes on this team, the future appears bright.
    I always said that SK ,with a new coaching staff, was not going to be able to fill all holes this year. I just don’t want to hear/read the complaints from fans by week 7 this year when or if they don’t have a winning record.

    As far as BA working at CBS, good for him, won’t get me to watch some jet v colt game but it should spice up the coverage from those other two he is sharing the boot with. Those two were as exciting as watching paint dry.

  10. By JTDG on May 3, 2018 | Reply


    I know a bunch of people will not want to hear this, but frankly, I could care less how many games we win this year.

    I am all about building this thing around Rosen.

    BTW, losing a lot will just put you in the Bosa sweepstakes. Not sure how Golden pans out as a DE, and we are becoming a 4-3. Bosa would be the perfect bookend to Jones and will save a lot of cap space.

    It also will be interesting to see what they do with Mason Cole. Will they put him at center or move him to RT or LG? I’m thinking center.

    another draft, another guard and receiver, a Rt in FA. We are on our way.

    But most of all, who the heck is playing CB2?

  11. By JTDG on May 3, 2018 | Reply


    Would you say the CB2 question has lingered as long or longer than the QB question in AZ?

    I still remember the cards trying to find that CB2 for Aeneas Williams . Could have used that other CB2 with DRC in the Super Bowl. Then Pat P since 2011 has been looking for that guy , besides a one year signing.

    What do you honestly think the issue is with this spot?

    Hey, I didn’t believe they would find their QB, and then comes Rosen. So there is hope. But man, why? The rams found two guys in this off season alone.

    Any clue to this puzzle?

  12. By Darren Urban on May 3, 2018 | Reply

    JTDG —

    RE: No. 2 CB

    Been a long time, but with FA and the cap, tough to get two good ones for any extended period of time. I think most teams are perpetually looking for at least one CB upgrade because of that.

  13. By JR on May 3, 2018 | Reply

    Watched the video of the Cardinals drafting their players, and the communication between Michael B. and the two Steve’s, was emotionally enthralling. Bought tears to my eyes. Thank you.

  14. By creditcard on May 3, 2018 | Reply

    Excited about the draft, and the URFA — I think the Cards received a few gems.

    Now, comes as important as the players, is the coaching staff in terms of molding these FA, URFA and draft picks into special NFL players.

    The Cards have a few obstacles this year, new coaching staff, new playbooks, new players etc… however, the Cards are molding a team that I think can turn heads, and be competitive this year.

    I especially like the concept of being committed to being dominant on both sides of the line — this wins championships.

  15. By Big Ken on May 4, 2018 | Reply

    Great draft and what an extensive list of UDFA’s, some very good players.

  16. By michael on May 4, 2018 | Reply

    Darren, I’d respectfully disagree on the difficulty of CB2 via free agency. Solid CB2s like Brandon Carr, Davon House and Captain Munnerlyn were all signed for under $3M. Tramon was $2M, but he wasn’t even brought in till late in camp. The others could have been signed and brought in for full camp AND after the comp picks formula was made (except maybe House). Clearly, Keim just doesn’t want to spend on this spot and seems intent on drafting and developing.that’s a worthy goal and smarter in the long run if it works out, but it hasn’t been working out. He wisely signed a $15M QB while developing another, so why not spend $3-4M on a solid CB2 while developing younger talent? Just baffles me, year after year

  17. By Darren Urban on May 4, 2018 | Reply

    Michael —

    RE: CB2

    1) There is still a chance they sign a vet again.
    2) I think JTDG was referring to a young long-term answer.

  18. By michael on May 4, 2018 | Reply

    Thanks Darren. Here’s hoping they do, but there were some good ones this year that signed for $4M or less while we spent the same on backup QB Glennon. we’ll see.

  19. By JTDG on May 4, 2018 | Reply

    Yes, that is exactly what I was meaning in regards to the CB2 spot.

    As you know Darren, I spoke about it before , during and after last years draft (2017) about landing a CB2.

    If in round 1 they took Travarious White or Marlon Humphrey in round one, the issue would have been over.

    The salary cap would have remained relatively low for 5 years for him and the team would have been better.

    As I have said so many times, no one is all good and no one is all bad. Keim gets all the credit for landing Rosen, but not taking that CB2 in 2017 was a huge blunder. Huge.

    An inside LB of Reddicks ability will never be as valuable as a solid young CB2.

  20. By Coach K on May 4, 2018 | Reply


    I agree with your comments above. 2018 will be a feeling out year and most likely at best an 8 win season, but most likely a 6 win season based on our schedule.

    Next years draft will be the best defensive draft in ten years with as many as 6 D-linemen, 4 corners and two linebackers all first day prospects.

    Next year, we need to focus on defense while Rosen finds his stride in 2019 and the Red Sea rises to 10 or 11 wins.

    Everything is falling into place perfectly.

  21. By Bob Lasure on May 4, 2018 | Reply

    MAGA Josh!
    Make Arizona Great Again!
    Screw the haters

  22. By CARDS62 on May 6, 2018 | Reply

    Like most of you I am very happy with our selection of Rosen especially when you consider how little we had to give up. All of us of course do not know if Rosen is the answer but he is definitely worth the risk, and this article states why all of us wanted a QB early in the draft. We all saw what Seattle was able to do with the cap space, and now the Eagles, Rams, and maybe Cowboys so this is the right move to make and why most of us have faith. Steve Keim made an intelligent move in the first round for a change.

    I know Sam Bradford is Mr. Glass, but I for one am hoping he starts every game for us this year. Sam is accurate and as long as he is starting that will mean we are winning. I am not ready to give up on this season yet, but remaining healthy will be the key, and guys remember we have a well rested David Johnson coming back. David if healthy can be the difference in 4 games. I am also excited to watch Kirk play WR for us this season especially with Fitz in his ear all season.

    Beginning of May and I can not wait for fall to get here.

    Go Cards!

  23. By Johnson on May 7, 2018 | Reply

    Someone said AZ will in a SB in the next 5 years. As pessimistic and a realist I have been for this organization, I still dont think we have all the pieces to the puzzle to win the SB even in the next 5 years. But the Josh Rosen pick is a bold one, one which echoes 2 past picks in QBs for this organization. Either he makes us feel he is Jake The Snake 2.0, a competent QB with a dustbin team around him in the next 5 years or he mirrors Matt Leinart, a blow out Pac 10 QB who fizzled out.

    Whatever happens, the defense of this team will need to carry the weight again, but with many pieces missing – its hard to pin point the success rate. Bradford will all due respect wont be able to play the entire season, which should be then used to put Rosen in the firing line. A 5-11 or a 6-10 season will be very interesting knowing the cap space opens up in 2019.

    Rams and 49ers are here to rule the NFC West for a long time, Cards, from 2019 onwards will need to rebuild again but there is some hope still to win that Lombardi, a hope that keeps fizzling in the valley for the past 30 years.

  24. By Scott H on May 7, 2018 | Reply

    Johnson –

    RE: Rams & 49ers

    I certainly agree that the 49ers appear to be going in the right direction and the Rams are already there, big time. But in terms of ruling the NFC West for a long time…..well, who knows? What is your definition of a long time? It is hard for teams to “rule” a division or a conference in today’s NFL for a long time.

    Obviously, the Patriots have been THE gold standard in that department. They have had the coach, the QB, and a way of doing things that just plain works. But no one else has been able to match that level of consistency / excellence during that same period. So, they are NOT normal..

    Hate to say it but the next best thing in recent memory has been the Seahawks. They built a wrecking ball of a defense in the draft and they were able to keep that core together for a long stretch. Along the way, they added Marshawn Lynch and it all came together with Russel Wilson.

    It is hard for teams to match that, even harder for teams to match that for a “long time.”

    So, we’ll see if the 49ers and / or Rams can put together the organizational aspects, the coaching, and the players that it takes to have a run like that – and then keep it together. Is either Goff or Jimmy G really good enough to do that? Are either of their head coaches good enough to do that? Is either organization able to put / keep it all together? The young QB’s are a good start but,,,,we’ll see.

    That said, I fully expect the Rams and 49ers to “rule” the division this year.

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