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Tom Brady’s new deal likely has big bonus, lower base salaries at first

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When it comes to his contract, Tom Brady is anything but free. But he’s still not likely at the top of the market.

Although the contract between Brady and the Patriots has not yet been filed with the NFL or the NFL Players Association (indeed, there’s a chance it hasn’t even been reduced to writing yet), here are some semi-educated predictions about what the final numbers will look like.

First, there will be another large signing bonus, similar to the $30 million signing bonus Brady received three years ago.

Second, the salaries for 2016 and 2017 will drop significantly from the current levels of $9 million and $10 million, respectively. The 2016 salary could be as low as $985,000, which would (as previously noted) drop Brady’s financial exposure on a four-game #Deflategate suspension from $2.11 million to $231,000. With the signing bonus allocation offsetting the salary reduction, the Patriots likely will realize some cap space in each of the next two years.

Third, the signing bonus allocation (which will be divided by four) will make the cap numbers higher in the two new years. But the salary cap could be closing in on $180 million by then, making today’s high-water cap numbers of $20 million far more manageable, especially for the most important position on the field.

The real question is whether Brady will play each of the next four years. He believes he will. If he does, the Patriots hold his rights through the end of the decade.

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68 Responses to “Tom Brady’s new deal likely has big bonus, lower base salaries at first”
  1. floratiotime says: Feb 29, 2016 12:21 PM

    And lots of dirty, off-the-books money.

  2. cmj0121 says: Feb 29, 2016 12:22 PM

    Plenty of contract incentives, like leading the league in lies, cheats and whines.

  3. Wisconsin's Favorite Son Jeffrey Be Dahmed says: Feb 29, 2016 12:24 PM

    I use to think my man Rodgers deserved a big bonus.

  4. fanofpft says: Feb 29, 2016 12:24 PM

    NFL should view it as tampering to avoid any impending fines.

  5. ninerfan81 says: Feb 29, 2016 12:26 PM

    buy in to some of the most exclusive hedge funds on the planet…undocumented…savvy

  6. awdlmd says: Feb 29, 2016 12:32 PM

    Cue the plantar fasciitis.

  7. billswillnevermove says: Feb 29, 2016 12:33 PM

    He takes a pay cut because he knows he couldn’t start on any other team. If Brady would of left years ago like Matt Cassell, they both would have the same career.

  8. wideright91 says: Feb 29, 2016 12:33 PM

    The ball boys have been getting greedy lately. TB needs more hush money.

  9. buttfumbles says: Feb 29, 2016 12:33 PM

    Pats homers: Name how many players (non-kickers and punters) have played at a high level at the age of 40 and beyond.

  10. quizlingclinic says: Feb 29, 2016 12:37 PM

    “buttfumbles says:
    Feb 29, 2016 12:33 PM
    Pats homers: Name how many players (non-kickers and punters) have played at a high level at the age of 40 and beyond.”

    — who cares? BB will cut him the second he’s not worth the money

  11. quizlingclinic says: Feb 29, 2016 12:38 PM

    Who cares? BB will cut him the minute he isn’t worth the money

  12. nhpats says: Feb 29, 2016 12:39 PM

    billswillnevermove says:
    Feb 29, 2016 12:33 PM
    He takes a pay cut because he knows he couldn’t start on any other team. If Brady would of left years ago like Matt Cassell, they both would have the same career.

    —————

    It must be hard for you given that Brady and the Pats have pummeled the Bills more than any other team over the past 15 years. Brady will play 4 more years with the Pats and during that time he will beat the Bills 8 more times. Also during that time the Bills will cycle through 3-4 more QBs and probably another coach as well.

  13. edelmanfanclub says: Feb 29, 2016 12:40 PM

    I have my doubts that Brady would be taking money off the books. His wife makes more than him and he already has enough money, isnt greedy (gave Butler the pickup truck he won the SB). So taking a paycut to help the team before his decline seems logical. Its acutally absurd to compare it to Denver illegally manpulating theirs in the 90s. Brady cant play forever but at this rate may be playing when I retire and I was 8 his rookie year.

  14. bjwbrown2011 says: Feb 29, 2016 12:40 PM

    I don’t think you are going to see another top tier QB take as many team friendly deals as Brady has. If the Pats can find another good QB, they are going to have to pay almost double what Brady makes.

    No matter how you feel about the Pats, you have to think that Bill Belichick the GM has let Tom Brady down a lot over the last 7 years with some really bad acquisitions and letting good players walk while Brady has been leaving millions on the table each year.

  15. edelmanfanclub says: Feb 29, 2016 12:42 PM

    @billswillnevermove

    Cassels 08 may be better than any qb season the Bills have had since Kelly left, except Bledsoe (another former Pat).

  16. flash1287 says: Feb 29, 2016 12:42 PM

    buttfumbles says:
    Feb 29, 2016 12:33 PM
    Pats homers: Name how many players (non-kickers and punters) have played at a high level at the age of 40 and beyond.

    How many players have played till 40?

    Jerry Rice had 92 receptions and over 1000 yards at 40
    Farve had one of his best seasons at 40
    Warren Moon was very effective at 40

    The real question is health. If he stays healthy with no major injuries he should still be able to make most throws.

  17. realpatsfan says: Feb 29, 2016 12:43 PM

    Here come the cheater feeders.
    They should know BB buy now, if it’s not in the rule book you’re not breaking the rules.
    Cry me a river.

  18. crewchief15 says: Feb 29, 2016 12:46 PM

    Brady’s last productive year coming up, that’s reality except it…

  19. pastabelly says: Feb 29, 2016 12:46 PM

    The only people who should be upset about this deal are fans of other teams. I’m happy that Brady will be the Patriots quarterback through 2019.

  20. chesswhileyouplaycheckers says: Feb 29, 2016 12:49 PM

    Just a look at the trolls’ comments here so far is very telling, one doesn’t even understand that by definition a team can’t tamper with their own player, lol. Not only is Brady the greatest player of the cap era just the thought of him exposes the haters as the idiots they are.

  21. PFT's Most Moderated says: Feb 29, 2016 12:51 PM

    Most overpaid, overrated player in the NFL. By far.

  22. jag1959 says: Feb 29, 2016 12:53 PM

    “Tom Brady’s new deal likely has big bonus, lower base salaries at first”

    Of course it does. Just like it always does. Why else would they do it?

  23. xxbarklikeadogxx says: Feb 29, 2016 12:57 PM

    Tom has given the Pats a home town discount for long enough. Given that his marriage is in trouble (google “cheating, Brady, nanny, divorce”) and his wife was the big bread winner, Tom needs all the money he can possibly get.

  24. flash1287 says: Feb 29, 2016 1:05 PM

    PFT’s Most Moderated says:
    Feb 29, 2016 12:51 PM
    Most overpaid, overrated player in the NFL. By far.

    This isn’t an article about Joe Flacco.

  25. veddermn8 says: Feb 29, 2016 1:08 PM

    fanofpft says: Feb 29, 2016 12:24 PM

    NFL should view it as tampering to avoid any impending fines.
    ……………

    that’s not what tampering means. and there are no impending fines, a judge threw them out. If the Appeal this week re-instates them, the suspension/fine punishments would be an entirely new punishment since the previously given punishment called for the suspension of Brady for the first four games of the 2015 season. There is obviously no way Brady can be suspended for the first four games of the 2015 season. The NFL would have to change the punishment to 2016 and cannot apply a 2016 fine to Brady’s 2015 salary. That makes no sense. It is a shrewd move by Brady and is perfectly within the rules.

  26. usa98j30t4 says: Feb 29, 2016 1:09 PM

    IF (and I doubt it happens) he gets suspended, he loses about one tenth of what he would have.

    GENIUS.

    I am sure Goodell will be trying his best to find loopholes with the contract.

  27. majormalphunktion says: Feb 29, 2016 1:17 PM

    This isn’t exactly new for him. He has done this almost exact deal twice already. Big check, then low cap hit in salary.
    This particular deal will make him one of the lowest paid QB’s in history.

    Now…what can the Pats do with all that cap space?
    Sign 3 all pro coming into thier prime defensive players.
    lock up the backfield for multiple years
    find another offensive weapon.

  28. 6ball says: Feb 29, 2016 1:18 PM

    .
    If Brady makes the league minimum this year, then it’s only to tweak Goodell.
    .

  29. majormalphunktion says: Feb 29, 2016 1:19 PM

    Brady’s last productive year coming up, that’s reality except it…

    ———————————————————-
    Been hearing this since 2008.

    Still waiting.

  30. sf546 says: Feb 29, 2016 1:29 PM

    I dislike Brady & Belicheat but I can’t believe the hate that rolls through the comments every time a Patriots story pops up. Thank God there wasnt any social media back when the 49ers were the Dynasty that crushed all your team’s hopes.

  31. igotgamenj says: Feb 29, 2016 1:34 PM

    SUH will put another beat down on him just like the last game

  32. hawk944 says: Feb 29, 2016 1:37 PM

    Interesting method of pushing the debt forward, typical Pats innovative way to keep the overhead under control and maintain the advantage. I can just see the other teams cringing .

  33. jm91rs says: Feb 29, 2016 1:47 PM

    Somebody get this man a freaking offensive weapon.

  34. flash1287 says: Feb 29, 2016 1:48 PM

    igotgamenj says:
    Feb 29, 2016 1:34 PM
    SUH will put another beat down on him just like the last game


    Why didn’t he do it the first time they played, when it mattered for the Dolphins?

  35. footballfanatic says: Feb 29, 2016 1:56 PM

    jm91rs says:
    Feb 29, 2016 1:47 PM

    Offensive weapon? Among top QB’s Tom Brady’s receivers have many more YAC yards than other teams. His receivers do more for him than most other teams……..so as far as “weapons” go, he is stacked. More than half of his passing yards were after the catch. So when u ask for “weaponss” just remember all those 4 yd slants or screens that turn into 18 yd plays.

  36. footballfanatic says: Feb 29, 2016 1:58 PM

    regardless of the player (i know this is big controversy b/c its Brady), but players should pay fines based on their pay at the time of infraction. The teams shouldnt be able to make salary changes to help players out like this, they dont learn their lesson if they just get off the hook by this nonsense.

  37. tonyzendejas says: Feb 29, 2016 2:06 PM

    Soooooooooooooooo much sour grapes. It’s an unending source of comedy.

    There isn’t a single anti-Pats commenter here who wouldn’t cut off his own foot for Tom Brady to play a single season at age 38+ for their team.

    Unassailable, undeniable truth.

  38. tonyzendejas says: Feb 29, 2016 2:08 PM

    “The teams … dont learn their lesson if they just get off the hook by this nonsense.”

    Right, they get off the hook because there’s ZERO proof that they committed an infraction.

  39. jessethegreat says: Feb 29, 2016 2:09 PM

    I guarantee pats were sitting around thinking about how to voice their displeasure with the ruling as respectably as possible and realized that, even if Brady’s suspension somehow holds through, the most subtle way of saying F.U. To the league would be to support Brady and at least make his fine be a fraction of what would have been.

    Kraft-Belichik-Brady is a shady combo but I like it.

  40. fishyinalittledishy says: Feb 29, 2016 2:25 PM

    Not saying Kraft and Brady have struck a see you right after you retire deal, but how would you know. Surely the league doesn’t have any jurisdiction once a player has finished. You would seriously need some trust between owner and player as nothing could be in writing just a nudge a wink and a handshake.

  41. whispersd says: Feb 29, 2016 2:37 PM

    “Not saying Kraft and Brady have struck a see you right after you retire deal, but how would you know.”

    Seems like you are saying that.

  42. boogerhut says: Feb 29, 2016 2:50 PM

    Gotta love all the “Tom gives discounts. Tom leaves money on the table for the team….” type comments. Tom hasn’t left a penny on the table. Where do you think that those HUGE signing bonuses go? To charity? That’s ludicrous. One more thing, players hit the wall fast. One year they break records, the next year it’s over. So sit back and believe that Tom will be here when you and your kids retire, that fall is going to be GLORIOUS to witness.

  43. rutledge3197 says: Feb 29, 2016 2:54 PM

    Suh ruined the Pats road to SB 50 …. Tammy is lucky she wasn’t broken in half

  44. 1gallon says: Feb 29, 2016 3:07 PM

    He takes a pay cut because he knows he couldn’t start on any other team. If Brady would of left years ago like Matt Cassell, they both would have the same career.
    —-
    Well, the Bills had Matt Cassell. Why couldn’t they beat the Patriots with him at QB? Are you saying that Belichick became a genius after coming the Patriots?

  45. nhpats says: Feb 29, 2016 3:11 PM

    boogerhut says:
    Feb 29, 2016 2:50 PM
    One more thing, players hit the wall fast. One year they break records, the next year it’s over. So sit back and believe that Tom will be here when you and your kids retire, that fall is going to be GLORIOUS to witness.

    —————–

    Brady will be gone one day. How will that make your team any better? Chances are, your team will still stink!

  46. ssullivan1005 says: Feb 29, 2016 3:17 PM

    The hate is sickening. Say Tom Brady’s name and all the haters start trolling. Tom Brady’s contract should be of no interest to any of you. He is not sharing with any of you!!

  47. marima07 says: Feb 29, 2016 3:20 PM

    To all the haters ‘threatening’ Pats fans about Tom Brady’s upcoming fall-off in production: We all know it will happen, but we’re having a blast enjoying the ride. We’ve been warned about Brady’s so-called window closing since 2009.

    It’s now seven years later and counting. Might as well save your breath.

  48. whywerule says: Feb 29, 2016 3:22 PM

    boogerhut says:
    Feb 29, 2016 2:50 PM
    ….So sit back and believe that Tom will be here when you and your kids retire, that fall is going to be GLORIOUS to witness.

    Maybe the Pats become just another team when Belichick and Brady are done, all we know is that 15 years, 10 AFC Championship games, 6 Super Bowl games, 4 Super Bowl wins, have been GLORIOUS to witness.

    And we are still counting.

  49. forthegoodofthegame says: Feb 29, 2016 3:35 PM

    Belichick owes it to Brady to fix the offensive tackle position this time around. The Patriots need to caarry 3 starting offensive tackles on the roster until Brady is done. Braady is paying the bill, so get it done.

  50. jacquesmgarcia says: Feb 29, 2016 3:52 PM

    floratiotime says:
    Feb 29, 2016 12:21 PM
    And lots of dirty, off-the-books money.

    _________________________________

    This isn’t John Elway we’re talking about here…

  51. Patskrieg says: Feb 29, 2016 4:49 PM

    I don’t know why the PFT comments section is straining so hard to find controversy or even a downside to the Brady extension. According to you guys he’s been washed up for years, and sucks, and was never any good, and somehow just fell into 4 Super Bowl rings, 2 NFL MVPs, 11 Pro Bowl selections, and still being amongst the league leaders in passing yards and touchdowns well into his late 30’s.

    Just let the poor guy and his unsuccessful team suck in peace already.

  52. pointtwopsiistheissue says: Feb 29, 2016 4:53 PM

    Maybe the Pats become just another team when Belichick and Brady are done, all we know is that 15 years, 10 AFC Championship games, 6 Super Bowl games, 4 Super Bowl wins, have been GLORIOUS to witness.
    ——————————————————–
    Worth repeating! it’s been a wicked awesome!!!

  53. xxbarklikeadogxx says: Feb 29, 2016 5:39 PM

    Maybe the Pats become just another team when Belichick and Brady are done, all we know is that 15 years, 10 AFC Championship games, 6 Super Bowl games, 4 Super Bowl wins, have been GLORIOUS to witness
    _____________________________________
    All tainted of course. You might want to add the monetary fines and lost draft picks.

  54. joetoronto says: Feb 29, 2016 6:15 PM

    Brady will be terrorize the Bills and their fanboys for years to come.

    Awesome.🙂

  55. eddievortex says: Feb 29, 2016 6:18 PM

    Teams renegotiate all of the time.

    When Brees, Falco, etal, renegotiate it’s to free up money for the salary cap to sign their own/other free agents, and draft picks.

    It’s funny when Brady does it he’s cheating or the Patriots are paying him under the table, etc., not so that maybe the Patriots can sign their free agents or extend contracts, or sign picks.

    Amazing!

  56. YouCryin?PatsMustBeDoingTheirJob says: Feb 29, 2016 7:02 PM

    Good move. Very Smart. Best organization in all the NFL. And add on all the real estate and time they own. They should be called the New England Puppetmasters. Good job BB and TB.

  57. securb2013 says: Feb 29, 2016 7:03 PM

    quizlingclinic says:
    Feb 29, 2016 12:38 PM
    Who cares? BB will cut him the minute he isn’t worth the money
    ___________________________

    If that is the case they should have cut him week 17 this year.

  58. patsfiend says: Feb 29, 2016 7:31 PM

    Excellent news, may even include a little middle finger to Roger. Fantastic.

  59. TheWizard says: Feb 29, 2016 7:45 PM

    The guy has no ego.

    I hope some young quarterback somewhere is taking notice and becomes the ultimate team player someday regardless of where.

  60. charliecharger says: Feb 29, 2016 7:48 PM

    Instead of spending the week at the combine timing 40 yard dashes, scouts should spend this time going back and looking at tape of Tom Brady at Michigan, and Joe Montana at Notre Dame. Otherwise, they’re going to make the same mistake. Those two guys played exactly the same in college as they played in the pros. They were huge winners in college. But I don’t think they looked all that awesome at the workouts. Montana was a skinny little dude, and Brady didn’t look very athletic. Meanwhile, scouts are at Indy measuring hand sizes and broad jumps. Are you serious? It’s all right there on the tape if you want to find the good QBs.

  61. vancouversportsbro says: Feb 29, 2016 8:00 PM

    That’s a lot of money going into McNally’s pockets.

    NFL should investigate their cap situation soon. Lots of money not being reported IMO

  62. goodellisaclown says: Feb 29, 2016 8:22 PM

    Brady has benefited from the fact that the Patriots have been in the mix for the SB for what… 15 or so straight seasons? He’s never been in the spot of being a huge cap hit on a mediocre (or even fringe playoff) team.

    Love him or hate him, give the guy credit for just getting contracts done in a relatively anonymous fashion. Even though Belichick hasn’t always utilized the cap room Brady has left on the table in the means many fans would like (i.e., signing big name FAs), can your really say things haven’t worked out?

    And in regards to his age and playing until he’s 42… did you watch him play last season? That inevitable decline will happen eventually… but not yet. Perhaps Brady benefits from the fact that he was never a QB who relied on his athleticism (it’s tough to lose a step when you never really had it in the first place).

  63. Bubbalicious says: Feb 29, 2016 8:56 PM

    Tom “Can’t beat anybody named Manning in the Playoff’s since Feb 2004” Brady better hope nobody else named Manning joins the league!

  64. drocity says: Feb 29, 2016 8:56 PM

    vancouversportsbro says:
    Feb 29, 2016 8:00 PM
    That’s a lot of money going into McNally’s pockets.

    NFL should investigate their cap situation soon. Lots of money not being reported IMO

    =====================================

    And your opinion is definitely one worth paying attention to. You have been right about so much. For example, the Canucks will sweep the Bruins, the Seatle D will shut down Brady, the Seahawks will run on the 1. It’s uncanny…

  65. hcgraves says: Feb 29, 2016 10:03 PM

    Another bone head move by the softest and dirtiest team in the league!!!

  66. majormalphunktion says: Feb 29, 2016 10:09 PM

    Maybe the Pats become just another team when Belichick and Brady are done, all we know is that 15 years, 10 AFC Championship games, 6 Super Bowl games, 4 Super Bowl wins, have been GLORIOUS to witness
    _____________________________________
    All tainted of course. You might want to add the monetary fines and lost draft picks.

    ——————————————————–
    Odd, I’ve seen the trophies, they are well polished with no taint on them at all.

    Even with losing 2 1st round draft picks the AFC still can’t keep up.

  67. 46namredyps11 says: Feb 29, 2016 11:10 PM

    Vancouver you realize that if you trade Brady for Manning in 02 the Patriots never play in another Super Bowl and the Colts add 7 trophies to their trophy case. And stop crying, you’re starting to make Sherman look tough.

  68. gisellichek says: Mar 1, 2016 11:15 AM

    Reading Patriots post on PFT is … well … Frankly really funny… Honestly I have never seen a greater collection of whiny, bitter , pissed off, angry cry baby football fans anywhere else on PFT…

    You people are like a huge flock of sea gulls on a fish pier… sitting around waiting for a Patriots story to drop on the ground.

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