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No signing bonus, $11 million guaranteed for Champ Bailey

Denver Broncos v Kansas City Chiefs Getty Images

We surmised on Tuesday that cornerback Champ Bailey opted to do a deal now with the Denver Broncos in part because he received a chunk of money now, in advance of a possible lockout.

We surmised wrong.  (Not the first time, nor the last.)

Mike Klis of the Denver Post has the details on Bailey’s new deal.

For starters, Bailey received no signing bonus.

His 2011 base salary of $11 million is fully guaranteed.  But he won’t get any of it until the 2011 season starts.

If Bailey is on the roster the first week of the 2011 season, another $4 million in 2012 will become guaranteed.  Bailey’s remaining $11 million in salary for 2012 at that point will become guaranteed for injury, and fully guaranteed on the fifth day of the 2012 league year.

As Klis suggests, the “industry” will say that $22 million is guaranteed.  But that’s not the case.  Only $11 million is truly guaranteed upon signing.  And the team can pull the plug by March 2012 for a total payout of only (only?) $15 million.

In all, it’s a four-year, $43 million deal.  Klis reports that, last October, the Broncos had a four-year, $43 million offer on the table, but the team yanked it.

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17 Responses to “No signing bonus, $11 million guaranteed for Champ Bailey”
  1. hobartbaker says: Feb 23, 2011 1:59 PM

    Surmise, surmise!

  2. nxsteven says: Feb 23, 2011 2:02 PM

    If Bailey is worth 4yrs/43m at 32 years old, what’s the market for Nnamdi (better) and Cro (worse)?

  3. thereisalwaysnextyear says: Feb 23, 2011 2:04 PM

    Sounds sort of like a win win. He plays and performs he gets paid. He doesn’t and the team can get out of it for “only” $15m. Not bad for a top flight corner who could be the next darrell green as far as not looking old.

  4. Mr. Super-Cool Awesome says: Feb 23, 2011 2:05 PM

    he’s past his prime. this will be his final year in denver. good for him though. one last cash grab.

    classy move by the team. give him a one year, “thanks for the memories” salary.

  5. krow101 says: Feb 23, 2011 2:20 PM

    This is so funny….

  6. philriverslovespenis says: Feb 23, 2011 2:21 PM

    Mr. Super-Cool Awesome says:
    Feb 23, 2011 2:05 PM
    he’s past his prime. this will be his final year in denver. good for him though. one last cash grab.

    classy move by the team. give him a one year, “thanks for the memories” salary.
    ————————————————–
    Past his prime, yes. Past his prime enough to be done after this year, I think not. Still better than 95% of cbs in the NFL.

  7. rhmfb says: Feb 23, 2011 2:38 PM

    Why is it Woodson from the Pack can go from CB to a safety spot and nobody thinks that is a bad idea but Champ won’t be able to make the move? Please! An athlete like Champ will be a nice safety when the time comes.

  8. sotopops says: Feb 23, 2011 2:41 PM

    If Bailey is on the roster the first week of the 2011 season, another $4 million in 2012 will become guaranteed. Bailey’s remaining $11 million in salary for 2012 at that point will become guaranteed for injury, and fully guaranteed on the fifth day of the 2012 league year.

    As Klis suggests, the “industry” will say that $22 million is guaranteed. But that’s not the case. Only $11 million is truly guaranteed upon signing. And the team can pull the plug by March 2012 for a total payout of only (only?) $15 million.
    ———————————–

    So if Im reading this right, the Broncos will pay $15 million to 34 yr-old Bailey for one season or $26 million for two seasons. Hmmm, seems not that far off from the contract 31yr-old Richard Seymour received that everyone on here claimed was outrageous. It’s funny how different that article was written compared to this one.

  9. sowcrates says: Feb 23, 2011 2:44 PM

    I’d say it was similar to the Bears’ deal for Peppers, with less money involved of course.

    If Chicago’s defense didn’t improve, and if Peppers didn’t really show up to play in a powerful way, Chicago could dump him this off-season at a total cost of about $22 million for this past season.

    Or, conversely, if Peppers played lights out but Chicago devolved into a rebuilding season due to injuries or underperformance along the roster, Chicago could consider cutting him or, because more than half of his deal was already paid, look to get some draft compensation by trading the rest of his contract to another team.

    I wish we saw older players getting deals like this more often. Give the 30+ year old a chance to show you he can still play, in return offer to potentially overpay him $5-10 million in the first year for a chance to release him or maybe trade him without cap hit costs for the next couple of years.

  10. sowcrates says: Feb 23, 2011 2:48 PM

    Chester Taylor is another guy whose schedule worked that way.

    He played dreadful his first year in Chicago, and he has to take part of the blame because Forte averaged 2 more yards per carry (2.4 to 4.5) behind the same terrible line.

    But, since most of his contract was paid in the first year, it’s not expensive at all to hang onto him and give him a chance to prove he’s still a good player for a low cost, or not be afraid to cut him loose if/when you find a better backup and have little cap penalty to pay

  11. profootballwalk says: Feb 23, 2011 3:13 PM

    Is it conceivable that they would pay him 11 million, and then cut him before the first week of the season? I can’t imagine how the first 15 million isn’t effectively guaranteed. He’d have to die to not get it.

  12. knightringonow says: Feb 23, 2011 4:05 PM

    Gutsy 1st move, Mr. Elway. No balls. Let Champ go play elsewhere for that kind of dough.

  13. radrntn says: Feb 23, 2011 5:09 PM

    good move for broncos and champ…it’s a win win for both of them. It allows the broncos to take a d-lineman.

  14. JSpicoli says: Feb 23, 2011 5:10 PM

    So he is priced like a mediocre DB. Like he is.

    This is for all the people who flamed me for saying he is past his prime and has been for 2 years.

  15. august1969 says: Feb 23, 2011 6:10 PM

    11M is no salary for a mediocre DB. He is currently an above average DB. His age and contract details seem correct, for a contending team with the cap space.

    For the Broncos, only time will tell.

    Tebow, Lloyd, Knowshon….

    Hey….you never know

  16. citizenstrange says: Feb 23, 2011 6:59 PM

    No signing bonus for you!

    What? Is Elway the signing bonus Nazi?/Seinfelded

  17. mrcowpatty says: Feb 23, 2011 7:04 PM

    This seals the deal, the Broncos will have the number 0ne pick in the 2012 draft.

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