New Dolphins quarterback Jay Cutler reportedly will have a $10 million base salary for 2017, plus incentives. Setting aside the incentives (the triggers and the amounts are currently unknown), the contract is a bargain for Miami.
Twenty-two starters will make more than $10 million this year, with a $5 million gap between Cutler and No. 22: New Bears quarterback Mike Glennon.
With Cutler clearly the best available option, he arguably could have pushed for more. The Dolphins found a way to get him to agree to play for very low-end starter money. Which is the silver lining in the sh-tstorm the descended on South Florida when Ryan Tannehill‘s knee buckled on Thursday.
The incentives will tell more of the story. But Cutler could have driven a harder bargain, if he’d wanted to. The fact that he’s returning for less than he could have gotten suggests that he realizes the opportunity he now has to fight for his first postseason berth since his second season in Chicago, seven long years ago.