The House Of David

By Lloyd Vance
Updated: April 9, 2008

PHILADELPHIA — One time back-up quarterback David Garrard hit the “big time” on Monday when he signed a contract extension for six years, $60 million dollars that included $18 million in guarantees.

Garrard had spent four years toiling in the shadow of former first round pick and anointed franchise quarterback Byron Leftwich before winning the starting job right before the 2007 season opener and never looked back.

I won’t get into the fact that the deal didn’t approach Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo’s deal (six years, $67.5 million with $30 million in guarantees).

But after a stellar 2007 season where the former East Carolina quarterback posted incredible and I said Pro Bowl type numbers of 208 of 325 passing for 2,509 yards, 18 TDs, and only 3 INTs plus led the Jags to a huge Wild Card win in Pittsburgh and the divisional playoff round, he deserved every penny.

Jaguars owner Wayne Weaver said of the contract and the play of Garrard, “I can tell you that this is by far and away the largest contract of any Jaguars player, and I can also say that David has earned this.”

Garrard, who also overcame Crohns Disease will now be a Jacksonville Jaguar through 2014, which more than likely will be the end of the 30-year old quarterback’s career.

The grateful quarterback said of the deal, “To come from where I was last year, it’s truly a blessing,” Garrard said.

Personally I am thrilled that Weaver, Garrard’s agent Al Irby, Jaguars contract guru Paul Vance (no relation), and Jags GM James “Shack” Harris saw the value in the classy quarterback.

Expectations will surely be high for Garrard now that he has gotten paid. But look for the humble quarterback to have an even bigger season in 2008 as now everyone knows that the Jaguars are “his” franchise.