We’ve gotten a look at the money-shifting restructuring signed earlier this week by Texans receiver Andre Johnson. While the more immediate reality is that the deal created $4.125 million in 2013 cap space for the Texans, the deal now sets the stage for a tough decision as soon as 2014.
The conversion of $4.5 million in base salary and a $1 million roster bonus to a signing bonus simply pushes an extra $4.125 million into future years, at a rate of $1.375 million for each of the next three seasons. It increases Johnson’s cap number in 2014 to $12.1 million and in 2015 to a whopping $16.1 million.
With the salary cap staying fairly flat and the free-agency market currently depressed, the 32-year-old Johnson’s skills likely will at some point intersect with the financial commitment, compelling Johnson to take less in order to stay on the team.
Maybe Johnson will do it in order to stay with the only team for which he’s ever played. Either way, the bridge will need to be crossed at some point in the next two years.