Perhaps one of the most frustrating aspects of the entire Matt Millen era aside from his terrible personnel decisions was the fact that he was making so much money from the Lions. Millen was the second-highest paid general manager in the entire NFL. Yes, you read that correctly. Despite the fact that the Lions amassed a 31-84 record during his tenure, Millen was making more money per year than 30 of the general managers in the league.
Millen's specific salary was $5 million a year after he signed a five-year contract extension in 2005. Before that, the assumption was that he was making $3 million a year, but Tom Kowalski reports that he may have been making $5 million a year all this time.
It had been widely reported that Millen made $3 million per season during his first five-year contract and then got a bump to $5 million per season for his five-year extension. According to a source close to the situation, Millen's pay has been $5 million per season from the first year he was hired (2001). Millen has already pocketed more than $35 million in his first seven-plus years and is scheduled to make $50 million for the entire 10-year term.
Great job, William Clay Ford. Not only are you going to end up paying the ex-general manager of your team a total of $50 million when all is said and done, but he didn't even deserve a penny of it. Matt Millen was the worst GM in the NFL and maybe even in sports as a whole. Despite that, he made $35 million during his time with the Lions and will make $15 million more for doing nothing at all.
If William Clay Ford really wanted to, he could have saved a lot of money if he had just plucked a fan off the street and given him $100,000 a year or something like that to run the team. Then again, the sad thing is that the fan probably would have put toegether a more successful team than Millen ever did during his 7+ years with the Lions.