Ben Tate says he would have been a safety
Yesterday, Seattle Seahawks safety Earl Thomas signed a four-year, $40 million contract extension. Thomas became the league’s first $10 million a year safety. While Thomas is earning $10 million a year, Cleveland Browns running back Ben Tate, who signed with the team in March, is earning $3.5 million a year.
While talking with Robert Klemko of MMQB.com, Tate said if he could do it all over again, he would be a safety.
“I would’ve been something else, for sure. I’d have been a safety,” he says. “I had the opportunity to play it in college, but I wanted to be the guy to get the ball. I had no idea the position would be devalued, but hopefully I can break that trend.”
While running backs have struggled to find a big pay day this off-season, other safeties have received big pay days. This off-season, safety Jairus Byrd also signed a $9.3 million-per-year contract with the New Orleans Saints.
According to Seahawks defensive coordinator Dan Quinnn, the devaluing of running backs is beginning in college and carrying over to the NFL.
“The devaluing of running backs has something to do with some of the offenses that are being run in college,” Seahawks defensive coordinator Dan Quinn says. “There’s a big group that are part of the zone-read world, where maybe they’re not getting the ball in the backfield and handing it off to a guy and saying, ‘Watch what this dude can do.’ ”
Unless Tate becomes a top 3 running back during the next two seasons in Cleveland, his next contract will not be much bigger than this one.