Being a perennial backup quarterback in the NFL can be a thankless job. However, for some quarterbacks, like Chris Streveler of the Arizona Cardinals, it could be a dream job. Being the backup can also bring in quite a bit of cash. Colt McCoy, the other backup quarterback for the Cardinals, made over $14 million as a backup for the Washington Football Team.
Even backups who are currently relegated to the practice squad, like Ryan Griffin, the backup for Tom Brady’s backup’s backup, has made $6.5 million with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. This begs the question, how much has Streveler made backing up Kyler Murray?
Who is NFL quarterback Chris Streveler?
Streveler went undrafted in 2018 after earning the MVFC Offensive Player of the Year in 2017 and being a runner-up for the Walter Payton Award. After the draft, he signed with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers of the Canadian Football League.
In two seasons with the Bombers, Streveler played in 35 games, starting 12. He threw for 2,698 yards, 19 touchdowns and 19 interceptions, with 242 completions in 374 attempts. The Bombers won the Grey Cup in 2019, which is the CFL’s Super Bowl. In February of 2020, the Bombers released Streveler to allow him to pursue an NFL job.
The QB signed a reserve/future contract with the Arizona Cardinals in 2020. He played in five games, but did not start any of them, throwing one touchdown and one interception as well as 105 yards, with 11 completions in 16 attempts. According to Spotrac, his contract was a three-year, $2,285,000, with no guaranteed money, though he’s already collected $1.4 million.
Where does Streveler rank among the Arizona Cardinals quarterbacks?
Kyler Murray remains the starting quarterback for the Cardinals, and veteran quarterback McCoy is his backup. McCoy has been in the NFL since 2010 when the Browns drafted him.
The now-35-year-old played three seasons in Cleveland and then played one season with the San Francisco 49ers, before signing with the Washington Football Team for six seasons. In 2020, McCoy signed with the New York Giants for one season and then signed a one-year contract with the Cardinals in 2021.
Even though McCoy had a strong college career and started all four years at the University of Texas, he has mostly served as a backup quarterback in the NFL. And Streveler is currently his backup on the Cardinals, though he was listed as inactive for Week 4.
Is being a third-string or fourth-string quarterback a dream job?
Not having to take all the big hits every game and getting a chance to learn from experienced quarterbacks make for a pretty good deal. Particularly when you are making a six or seven-figure salary. If disaster strikes, either in the form of an injury or an awful performance, you get a chance to be the hero for your team and maybe even move up on the roster. Not to mention, even if you are on the practice squad, you still get a Super Bowl ring if your team wins the big game.
But being a backup quarterback is not always a good time. Often, when they do get the chance to play, they are judged more harshly due to their backup status. Boomer Esiason threw some major shade at Streveler and the CFL during a 2020 game when he came in for the injured Murray. This actually backfired on Esiason because he was a backup analyst for that game, filling in for Tony Romo.
Even though backups such as McCoy and Streveler likely won’t see much playing time outside of the preseason, they are valuable members of the team. The salary probably doesn’t hurt either.