As is the case with many free agent deals, there was some sticker shock when the news of Connor Barwin's contract started to leak out.
6 years for $36 million! Wow monster money!
But then we all start to remember that NFL contracts are about one thing, guaranteed money. Eagles fans will remember when Demetress Bell signed a 5-year, $35 million deal last offseason. He's not here anymore and it didn't cost the Eagles a dime to cut him. That's because all of his guarantees were in the first year.
It was soon revealed that Barwin's deal included just $8 million in guarantees. There's also another $4 million in incentives that are possible. Here's how it breaks down.
- The guaranteed money is all in the first two years.
- In the first 3 years of the deal he'll make $13.5 million
- If you do the math, that means the last 3 years are heavily backloaded with $22.5 million dollars, none of which is guarnateed.
So here's how this deal is going to work. If after 2 years, he's not living up to what they expect they wipe their hands of it and he's gone for nothing.
If he's playing generally up to expectations he'll get 3 years of the contract and make about $4.5 mil a year doing so.
If he exceeds expectations and is a perennial double digit sack guy, he can make upwards of $7-8 million a year over the last 3 years of the deal. But frankly, that's never going to happen. If in 3 years, he's a consistent double digit sack guy or a pro bowler, he's going to be looking for a new deal anyway. If he's not, he'll be cut.
There's almost no way these last 3 years of the deal play out as is.
So in all, this is a very reasonable contract any way you slice it. And as it is structured now, it is almost certainly no more than a 3 year deal.