Ed Reed has a financial incentive to wait until the playoffs

AP

We’ve noticed several different versions of what safety Ed Reed received for his cup of chili with the Texans.

Here’s the full payout, via NFLPA records.  For seven games (five starts), Reed received a $2 million signing bonus, a $1 million guaranteed base salary in 2013, and $2 million in future guaranteed salary advances.  He also received $62,500 for each game on the 46-man roster, which adds another $437,500 to the pile.

The total take:  $5.4375 million.

There’s a minor caveat.  With Reed clearing waivers, the Texans are on the hook for the remaining $411,764.70 in guaranteed base salary.  We’re told, however, that the deal has offset language, based on NFLPA records.  This means that, if Reed joins another team for the rest of the year, the Texans will get a dollar-for-dollar credit — and Reed will have to get more than a prorated $1 million salary in order to do anything other than play for free.

There’s a minor caveat to the caveat.  Reed could choose to take the balance of his base salary as termination pay, which permits double dipping.

And, of course, there’s a minor caveat to the caveat to the caveat.  Vested veterans (players with four or more years of service) may exercise the termination pay benefit only once in their careers.  So he would need to ask himself whether he wants to bank the ability to use termination pay for 2014 or beyond.

In sort of the same way you’re asking yourself why you took the time to read all of this.

As a practical matter, Reed likely doesn’t care about the $411,764,70.  He’s getting it, one way or the other.  He’ll definitely get it all from the Texans if he doesn’t sign with a new team until the postseason.