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Mon Sep 12, 2016 4:07 pm
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Harrison Smith's new deal pays $15.278M in 2016, but Vikings maintain flexibility
The Minnesota Vikings' new deal with safety Harrison Smith makes the 27-year-old the highest-paid player at his position, which Smith's camp told the Vikings was a cheap NFL Jerseys prerequisite of any contract extension. The deal, though, allows the Vikings to retain much of the cap flexibility they cherish.
Smith's new deal gave him a $10 million signing bonus, on top of the $5.278 million he already had guaranteed from his fifth-year option. The Vikings also guaranteed Smith's 2017 base salary ($5.15 million) and his 2018 base ($7.65 million) against injury; both amounts will become guaranteed on the third day of the 2017 and 2018 league years. Smith's 2019 base salary of $8.35 million Washington Redskins Jerseys has a $500,000 guarantee at signing, and the number would be guaranteed on the third day of the 2019 league year.
The deal's structure closely resembles that of the contract for Kyle Rudolph, Smith's former college teammate who also is represented by Brian Murphy of Athletes First. Rudolph's deal paid a $6.5 million signing bonus and effectively guaranteed his 2014 base salary, while including full guarantees of his Wholesale NFL Jerseys 2015 and 2016 bases, along with a partial 2017 guarantee, against injury at signing. Those salaries become fully guaranteed on the third day of the league year for Rudolph as well, and like Smith, the tight end can get a $250,000 roster bonus based on how many games he spends on the active roster.
It's a classic Vikings deal, which allows the team to reap $4 million in cap savings as soon as 2018 if it were to release Smith, and puts the bulk of the cash in the safety's pocket in the first years of the contract. Murphy and his associates at Athletes First have worked with Vikings VP of football operations Rob Brzezinski on enough contracts that the structure should be fairly easy to duplicate. Smith will get $15.278 million in cash this year, and while he will carry cap numbers of $10 million or more in the final four years of the contract, the Vikings can recoup plenty of cap space after the first two years of the deal.
Smith said Tuesday he plans to use the new deal as motivation, and he'll certainly have opportunities to continue proving he's worth the money. The Vikings, meanwhile, were able to reward Wholesale Washington Redskins Jerseys their Pro Bowl safety without the risk of debilitating salary figures over the long term.