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Question of the day: Who should be the highest-paid player in the NFL?

August 3, 2010 |  1:37 pm

Reporters from around the Tribune family tackle the question of the day, then you get a chance to chime in and tell them why they're wrong. Check back throughout the day for updates.

Ken Murray, Baltimore Sun

Operating on the concept of “what have you done lately?,” I think Drew Brees deserves to be most richly-rewarded player in the league. Bringing a Super Bowl title to the traditionally-have-not Saints is his best argument, especially with a defense that often resembled a sieve.
 
That Brees also beat the game's best quarterback, Peyton Manning, and the Colts to get it simply underscores how much he deserves to be recognized as an elite player.
 
But I wouldn't have a problem giving the most money to Manning, either. Without him, the Colts are nothing. In fact, the best coaching job in the NFL is offensive coordinator with Indianapolis. You don't even have to call plays.

Sam Farmer, Los Angeles Times

Without question it should be Brett Favre, and only partly because he's a great quarterback.

The real reason he's so valuable to the league is he can generate headlines -- even eye-rollers -- with his every hiccup.

As tiresome as this retirement tango has been, at least we're not talking about a player arrested for drugs, beating up his girlfriend, or the like. He's a highly entertaining player who's headed for Canton. He's just taking the long way.

Updated at 1:14 p.m.

Dave Hyde, Sun Sentinel

The highest-paid player should be a quarterback because of the position's importance. It should a player who’s carried his team to a Super Bowl title, because of the involved credibility. It should be someone in the prime of talent because sports is about today. It also should be someone who defines their franchise to anchor it in the community.
 
Drew Brees, in other words.
 
Indianapolis quarterback Peyton Manning fits all that criteria, of course. Ditto for New England's Tom Brady. They're talking new contracts.
 
Brees just fits the ideal of the highest-paid player better. He's 31 -- younger than Brady, 33, or Manning, 34. He's carried an offense. He defines his community. And, as of now, he’s a bargain at the six-year, $60-million contract signed in 2006.

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