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Crabtree will never see $40 million over six years

We’ve picked up some more details regarding the Michael Crabtree contract, which has been characterized as having a maximum value of $40 million over six years.

And, as expected, Crabtree will never earn $40 million over six years, because if he does enough to earn the $8 million in year-six escalators he also will have done enough to void the sixth year.

Still, the contents of the “superescalator” package (as the NFLPA is describing it) are remarkable.  On three occasions in the first five years of the deal:  (1) Crabtree must participate in 80 percent of the snaps on offense; (2) Crabtree must qualify for the Pro Bowl; (3) the 49ers must win 14 games; and (4) Crabtree must be named Super Bowl MVP.

Three times in five years.

And, actually, it’s three times in four years, because there’s no way he’ll participate in 80 percent of the snaps this year.

Meanwhile, two Pro Bowls in four years will wipe out the sixth year of the deal.

As one source said, “Why bother even putting the $8 million escalator in the contract?”

The answer is simple.  Because it introduces the figure of $40 million into the conversation regarding the deal, which will help agent Eugene Parker persuade future recruits that he wanted a $40 million deal for Crabtree — and that he got it.

Also, we’re told that a whopping $15 million in escalators hinge upon 90-percent participation in all voluntary offseason workouts, which is part of what some are calling the “diva clause.”

Moreover, of the $17 million in guaranteed money, $6.395 of it is guaranteed for injury only. 
So if the 49ers decide that Crabtree is a bust, they can avoid more than $10 million in supposedly guaranteed cash.

Bottom line?  The raw dollars in the deal are good — if Crabtree sticks around long enough to get them.  If he doesn’t perform well or if he doesn’t fully commit to the offseason program each and every year, the financial exposure reduces dramatically.

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33 Responses to “Crabtree will never see $40 million over six years”
  1. Hap says: Oct 15, 2009 11:02 AM

    A substanceless contract for an unproven playa dressed up to make peeps think the agent won for his client. This whole deal is a joke like the playa it references. Why dwell on it ? Move on, please.

  2. Ottawa49ers says: Oct 15, 2009 11:05 AM

    this site is great for details like this, good work Florio
    Parker is a douchebag

  3. crodseth says: Oct 15, 2009 11:05 AM

    As it should be…you suck, you don’t get paid as much.

  4. WATSON1101 says: Oct 15, 2009 11:07 AM

    The bottom line is no team likes to be screwed with. So in return they stick it to you with a deal you can never ever expect to accomplish.. Welcome to the NFL Crabtree, should of taken the 1st deal. Thank your agent for that or should I say your Dumb A@# cousin. Who has there cousin as an agent anyways. Idiot.

  5. rangersleadtheway says: Oct 15, 2009 11:08 AM

    I should be an agent for diva players who have disillusions about their abilities..
    I promise to get all of my players $100 million dollar contracts. The $100million escalator will kick in if they score 50 tds every year for the first four years of their contracts.. dude, youre awesome, you can do it.

  6. Babbabooey says: Oct 15, 2009 11:09 AM

    Big deal. If he ends up being a bust, the 49ers aren’t out as much and obviously if he has a Larry Fitzgerald type performance in a year or two he’s going to get a new contract after probably 4 years anyway, so the 5-6 year stuff on the current contract is hogwash.
    “Thank you for your call”

  7. Jerry0808 says: Oct 15, 2009 11:09 AM

    Too bad Redskin ownership isn’t smart enough to structure player contracts in such a manner. Then again, we here in DC don’t have a “diva” issue…oh wiat…crap.

  8. johnk says: Oct 15, 2009 11:13 AM

    This kind of minutiae is exactly the reason I come here. Thanks for the analysis, and please ignore everyone who complains about it. Let ’em go somewhere else.

  9. stopwatch says: Oct 15, 2009 11:13 AM

    In previous posts the deal was called a lose-lose. Looks like the 49ers won and crabtree lost. I’m guessing Parker won’t have a top 20 draft pick next year.

  10. SmackMyVickUp says: Oct 15, 2009 11:15 AM

    With the escalators only Larry Fitzgerald and Andre Johnson would have qualified recently.
    Not going to happen.

  11. Babie Hoodie says: Oct 15, 2009 11:18 AM

    49ers reply “check mate”.
    Thank you for playing the game Michael Crabtree, you’re officially a failure at life and should probably just kill yourself.
    Oh and you Mr. Eugene Parker, let’s not get started on you. IDIOT OF THE YEAR AWARD for this guy.

  12. parasonic says: Oct 15, 2009 11:18 AM

    I totally agree. I wish Snyder would look how other organizations do business. How hard is that? Everyone claims this is a copycat league yet the skins can’t throw the ball or grow from the ground up.

  13. GiantsDefenseRules says: Oct 15, 2009 11:21 AM

    If Crabtree wants to safe face with his new team and its fans, he will fire his agent as soon as the ink dries. Let the agent take the fall for the holdout.
    I don’t think he would have held out as long without someone (Parker, Deion, etc) telling him it was a good idea!

  14. mike says: Oct 15, 2009 11:22 AM

    Well, that’s good….but he’s still coming out of there a multi-millionaire.

  15. OldNumber7 says: Oct 15, 2009 11:23 AM

    I believe that Crabtree must also cure Cancer to hit the “superescalator”.

  16. Brooklyn Eagle says: Oct 15, 2009 11:31 AM

    How can a contract hinge payment on “voluntary” activities?

  17. homercles82 says: Oct 15, 2009 11:31 AM

    He still gets $17,000,000 in guaranteed money.
    I would be happy right now with that.

  18. Bill In DC says: Oct 15, 2009 11:39 AM

    So does that qualify as an ‘unlikely to be earned’ bonus under the CBA definition?
    The 49’ers going to the Superbowl 3 out of the next 5 years seems relatively unlikely to me. That and they probably have to WIN the SB because I don’t think any player from the losing SB team has ever been named the MVP of the SB, have they?

  19. mwcarolina says: Oct 15, 2009 11:49 AM

    he will get paid 40 million in 6 years, IF and only if, first he has great years with the 49ers and earns a new contract with a new team and becomes great like Fitzgerald does.

  20. qawagstaff2009 says: Oct 15, 2009 12:07 PM

    Crabtree will have the last laugh. Right now he is guarantee 17 million in cash. That isn’t horse manure

  21. crex43 says: Oct 15, 2009 12:23 PM

    “Crabtree will have the last laugh.”
    Crabtree: HAHA… I’m the only first rounder in which more than half of my total contract value isn’t guaranteed! HAH… it will be impossible for me to make more cash than Darrius Heyward-Bey.
    All this time I thought he was going to hold out and enter next year’s NFL Draft and get signed to someone’s practice squad. Some interesting contracts in the end though. It will be interesting to see what the contracts look like next year.

  22. McWest says: Oct 15, 2009 12:25 PM

    >>>That and they probably have to WIN the SB because I don’t think any player from the losing SB team has ever been named the MVP of the SB, have they?

  23. TSE says: Oct 15, 2009 12:42 PM

    Maybe Crabtree will just pull a Brandon Marshall and pout all year and not even try, in efforts to get SF to trade him in the offseason like they previously were going to try and do.
    The only difference is Crabtree gets some money now, instead of nothing for the year, and he can get a new contract from the team that tampered him into taking a temporary ONE year deal with SF?
    And then since he can pillage SF for a few bucks now, the new team won’t have to give him quite as big of a better contract. Everything is going according to plan. 😉

  24. Trickyblain says: Oct 15, 2009 1:12 PM

    —–# homercles82 says: October 15, 2009 11:31 AM
    He still gets $17,000,000 in guaranteed money.
    I would be happy right now with that.——
    Nope. According to this article, the 49ers can dump him if he does not perform and save 10 large. In reality, the only money he is “guaranteed” to make is $6.4 million.
    As a 49er fan, however, I hope he get $40 million! That means the team will win the Super Bowl, with Crabs as the MVP, three out of the next five years. Never mind that he plays on a run-first team and that no player — not Joe Montana, not Tom Brady, not Jerry Rice– has ever come close to doing that in what is essentially a four-year span…

  25. KILLER FIN says: Oct 15, 2009 1:17 PM

    There really needs to be rookie cap in place, this B/S is really rediculous!!! HE’S AN UNPROVEN ROOKIE!!!

  26. Babbabooey says: Oct 15, 2009 1:18 PM

    Hey Bill, 49ers are 5-0 in the superbowl, just sayin…..

  27. JP says: Oct 15, 2009 1:37 PM

    “As a 49er fan, however, I hope he get $40 million! That means the team will win the Super Bowl, with Crabs as the MVP, three out of the next five years. Never mind that he plays on a run-first team and that no player — not Joe Montana, not Tom Brady, not Jerry Rice– has ever come close to doing that in what is essentially a four-year span…”
    Actually…Tom Brady came very close to doing it. The Pats won the SB in 2002, 2004, and 2005. Brady was MVP in ’02 and ’04, and in ’05 (in a somewhat questionable decision) the MVP went to Deion Branch rather than Brady.
    Of course, Crabtree is no Brady.

  28. FavreHater says: Oct 15, 2009 2:11 PM

    I guess the term “guaranteed money” isn’t so guaranteed.
    If this is the same deal he turned down in the first place, now we know why.

  29. Trickyblain says: Oct 15, 2009 2:13 PM

    JP, you’re right. I forgot about the ’05 season, Brady probably deserved that, seeing how Branch didn’t have a single TD (Brady had two TD passes).

  30. Terry says: Oct 15, 2009 4:54 PM

    All he has to do is produce; he’ll hold out again and get market value at a later time; in all likelihood with another agent, once he understands that
    Parker screwed him!

  31. ajt says: Oct 15, 2009 6:58 PM

    “Crabtree will have the last laugh?”
    If you mean… perpetuating a prima-dona, selfish, greedy image; if you mean being villainized by media and fans; if you mean, wasting away your rookie season; if you mean holding out to no avail and subsequently getting paid the slot money you were owed… I guess he will have the last laugh…?

  32. CatfishKP says: Oct 15, 2009 11:44 PM

    Crabtree sure isn’t very smart… this poor guy.
    He was a high school QB, yet chose to go be a receiver at Texas Tech where they throw the ball 65 times per game and won the Biletnikoff two years in a row and left after his sophomore year.
    He then foolishly signed $750k worth of endorsements before the NFL draft even started, giving him zero urgency to sign a deal while his foot was healing and hoping for a great contract.
    He then settled for a mere $5M per year to play football. Poor sap. Good luck, Crabtree.

  33. John says: Oct 16, 2009 3:28 PM

    Here is an interesting question. How is the agent paid? I think I remember hearing that a typical agent in the NFL gets like 3%. So does he get his money up front(1.2M). If so, I guess that would explain why the agents want these blockbuster deals with huge numbers nearly unreachable at the end. They would essentially be stealing a big chunk of cash by calculating the percetage based on money the player will never get.
    Just a thought be kind as I am a first time poster.

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