As expected, Pittsburgh Steelers tackle Alejandro Villanueva has qualified for extra pay under the NFL’s “Performance Based Pay” program that compensates players for playing time based upon their salary levels. The league indicates that Villanueva earned an extra $309,834.87.
I wrote about this after the 2015 season ended and it case you missed that, here is a small recap of why the Steelers tackle will receive the extra pay.
According to the league, performance-based-pay is a fund that was created and used as a supplemental form of player compensation based on a comparison of playing time to salary. Players become eligible to receive a potion of the bonus distribution in any regular season in which they play at least one official down. The pay is reportedly computed by using a “player index.” To produce that index, a player’s regular-season playtime (total plays on offense, defense and special teams) is divided by his adjusted regular-season compensation (full season salary, prorated portion of signing bonus, earned incentives). Each player’s index is then compared to those of the other players on his team to determine the amount of his pay.
Villanueva, who was originally signed by the Steelers just prior to the start of the 2014 regular season following his release from the Philadelphia Eagles, started 10 regular season games and both playoff games in 2015 after the team lost starting left tackle Kelvin Beachum for the year to a left knee injury that suffered during the sixth game.
Villanueva earned $435,000 in 2015 and is currently under contract through the 2016 season.
In case you’re curious, the extra money does not count against the Steelers salary cap as it is considered a benefit.