With Panthers linebacker Thomas Davis suffering his third torn ACL in three years, plenty of Panthers fans are wondering why the team signed him to a long-term deal in July.
Here’s one reason: The Panthers protected themselves against this specific outcome.
A league source has forwarded to PFT the contract info, which reveals that Davis received a signing bonus of $7 million and a base salary of $1 million in 2011. An $8 million option bonus is due on the third day of the 2012 league year, which the Panthers can avoid by cutting Davis.
If they cut Davis, the Panthers will avoid a $2.25 million salary in 2012, a $250,000 workout bonus in 2012, a $4.25 million salary in 2013, a $250,000 workout bonus in 2013, a $5.75 million salary in 2014, a $250,000 workout bonus in 2014, a $7.25 million salary in 2015, and a $250,000 workout bonus in 2015.
That’s $28.5 million in salary and bonuses that easily can be avoided, with what would have been a five-year, $36.5 million contract becoming a one-year, $8 million deal.