While there will be a correction, which we're witnessing now, I don't think it's really going to be that different from the past. Bad teams will still overpay to get better, good teams will let good players walk to keep their core together. For the Seahawks, whether it's possible to keep Sherman as part of that core remains to be seen. However, on the OP's point about how it seems only the elite QBs are getting the obscene money, and the owners are playing along, I think that's caused by multiple temporary factors, which will even out and then be back to normal, possibly as soon as next year.
1. The salary cap has been flat. Many teams would have budgeted for the roughly $5-7 million per year increase that had been happening during the 2000s. The fact that the salary cap effectively went down in 2010, and has only crawled up 3 million in two years since leaves a lot of teams in a tight spot with existing contracts that didn't get the cap relief they would have expected when deals were initially signed. That means more teams are having to cut existing veterans, restructure, or sign free agents at deals that may be less than perceived market value. Having super cheap rookies is certainly a good short term fix for them as well. I believe 2014 is when the new TV contract will hit, so who knows what that will do to the cap. Regardless, I think you're seeing teams take a more conservative approach on future expenditures given we're stuck in a period of little growth, which will change when teams have a better idea of what the cap will look like 5 years down the road.
2. The salary cap floor starts this year, sort of. My understanding of the current CBA's floor is that it's a rolling floor of 89% spread over 4 years. So technically teams can be short this, or next, or the year after, but at some point over the next 4 years they're going to have to spend that money somewhere so that they average 89% over that period. Since rookies are now limited, vets will have to get that money, though you might still see shorter term contracts rather than the long term ridiculous deals of the past that had no chance of being fully paid.
3. While I'm not sure Smith is to blame for a bad CBA (as I'm not really sure it's a bad deal in the existing economy), the fact the NFLPA agreed to the sanctions against the Redskins and Cowboys was certainly against their best interest. If there are two owners who are going to ignore conventional spending wisdom and artificially inflate the value of veterans, it's Dan Snyder and Jerry Jones. The fact that those organizations had their knees cut out from under them for the past two seasons went a long to way in my opinion to reducing crazy veteran contracts. And with the death of Al Davis, I think that took the third overspending owner out of the picture. Without a few outliers that agents can play off of, I think that leads to the smaller deals the vets are seeing now. You still had some teams giving big contracts to mediocre players (see Indy), but for the most part the competitive teams were able to sit back and let the market come to them. Next year, when the Redskins and Cowboys can really wheel and deal again, I think that will change.
I may be wrong, but I think we'll see a return to normalcy (or depending on perspective, insanity) on the contracts starting next year when the teams can better gauge the future. Rookies are still just that, teams win with a core of veterans, and free agency will still allow for those veterans to choose the highest bidder.