New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady did his organization a huge favor on Monday when he signed a three-year contract extension. The move helps the Patriots lower the cap hit on Brady in 2013 and 2014 for starters, which will free up a ton of cap room to work with during free agency.
In his old contract, Brady was already scheduled to earn $30 million by the start of the 2015 league year. The new contract guarantees him $33 million during that same time frame. The final three years that were added onto the deal are guaranteed from injury only and the base salaries in those years are $7 million, $8 million, and $9 million respectively. In other words, Brady received $3 million more in guaranteed money and he protected himself long-term from injury. Oh, he also saved his team a ton of cap space and will likely be canonized after his playing days are over.
Sure, the back end base salaries could have been higher, but there is no way that Brady plays until he is 40. I just can\’t see it.
The Patriots cap charges on Brady in the final three years of the extension are $13 million, $14 million and $15 million respectively. Those are all very easy to swallow should he still be playing. Should the Patriots want to part ways with Brady after the 2015 season, it appears that there will be $12 million worth of dead money involved in doing that. Making him a post June 1st cap cut following the 2015 season would result in $6 million in dead money in both 2016 and 2017. The cap won\’t remain flat forever and $6 million will be easy to swallow in both of those years should that be the end result.
Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger is expected to have his contract restructured any day now to free up cap space for the Steelers, but it will not receive the accolades from the media that Brady is getting. Next offseason, when Roethlisberger is more than likely to receive an extension, you can bet that he will not want the average value of the Brady deal pointed to as a template. You cant blame him and you shouldn\’t be mad at him either.
Brady has already had a few cash grabs while Roethlisberger has had just one outside of his rookie contract. His next extension will more than likely be his last so he needs to get what he can. That amount, however, will be fully dependent on how well he plays in 2013. It will also likely depend on what the final deal looks like for Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco. Many believe that Flacco will get somewhere between $118-120 million over 6 years prior to the start of the 2013 season.
Brady was basically paid to rearrange some money on Monday. He received a little more guaranteed and protected himself from injury by doing so. Sure, it looks good on paper, but he shouldn\’t be considered a candidate to become the next Pope when the Cardinals have their conclave.