The NFL officially announced performance-based pay distributions from the 2019 season.
You can find a detailed explanation on how performance-based pay works by clicking here. In simple terms, it’s designed to reward players who play a lot of snaps but aren’t due very lucrative salaries (relatively speaking). Note that quality of performance does not factor in here; it’s all about playing time. Also note that these payouts DO NOT count against a team’s salary cap space.
Philadelphia Eagles linebacker Nathan Gerry led all his teammates performance-based pay from last year’s campaign. Gerry was a prime candidate for this bonus since he played a lot but he wasn’t making a ton of money since he was a fifth-round pick in the 2017 NFL Draft.
Gerry’s payout came to $345,976, which ranks 12th most in the NFL. Gerry also earned $213,484 from the veteran pool, which ranked eighth most in the NFL. The combined bonus of $559,460 added to his $645,000 base salary gives him just over $1.2 million earned from 2019. That’s really not much money compared to what NFL veterans are making but, hey, he’ll take it.
Gerry worked hard for his money by playing 620 (61%) defensive snaps and 335 special teams snaps (74%) last season. He did all that while playing through a core muscle injury he suffered back in training camp.
We previously wrote about Gerry’s future outlook earlier this offseason:
There’s a bit of disconnect when it comes to how observers value Gerry and how the team values him. Eagles linebackers coach Ken Flajole literally said something to the effect that Gerry knows more about football than he does. The team seems to value Gerry’s mental ability and his toughness. To the chagrin of some, I think we could see the Eagles sign him to a below market contract extension this offseason ... not dissimilar to the approach they took with Isaac Seumalo last year. “Whitesnake” is likely here to stay.