BBAO: QB deals break from convention

We're Black and Blue All Over:

For those who are interested in NFL contract minutia, it's worth reiterating Ed Werder's point about the relatively rare twist of two major contract extensions signed this offseason in the NFC North.

The Green Bay Packers and Detroit Lions both parted from convention by extending their quarterbacks' contracts two years away from expiration. Typically, NFL teams prefer to wait until one year prior to expiration before re-negotiating. The idea is to get maximum value from the presumed economy of the current contracts, while also avoiding a precedent that would lead other players to see early extensions.

The Packers made an exception for Aaron Rodgers because of the level to which he had outperformed his contract, signed midway through his first year as a starter in 2008. And the Lions agreed to terms with Matthew Stafford this week in part to lower his salary-cap numbers in 2013 and 2014.

Continuing around the NFC North: