Mike Evans gets around offset language, sort of


After a couple of years of pushing and pulling, teams drafting in the top 10 have won the back-and-forth regarding offset language.  For the most part.

A quick refresher:  Under the rookie wage scale implemented in 2011, the top 20 or so players taken receive fully guaranteed contracts.  In the first two years, most of the top nine players managed to have the offset language removed from their deals.

This minor tweak allowed players to double dip, in the unlikely event that they are cut during the first four years of their NFL careers.  With offset language in the contract, the former team gets a dollar-for-dollar credit as to any other money the player earns elsewhere, if he’s released.

This year, six of the top nine draft picks have agreed to terms.  Five of them, including No. 1 overall pick Jadeveon Clowney of the Texans, have agreed to the presence of offset language.  One of them — Buccaneeers receiver Mike Evans — managed to get the offset language removed for guaranteed roster bonuses payable early in training camp of the 2015, 2016, and 2017 seasons.

It equates to $575,000 being exempt from the offset obligation in 2015, $1.150 million in 2016, and $1.725 million in 2017.

None of it matters if Evans becomes as good as the Bucs think he’ll be.  Which means that, if the teams believe in their scouting process and draft-room decisions, they shouldn’t worry about offset language, since the last thing they’ll be doing is cutting the player during the first four years of his contract.

6 responses to “Mike Evans gets around offset language, sort of

  1. Yeah,but according to you its the teams who are responsible for dragging these contract negotiations out….

    The teams should be confident in their scouting? How about the player and his agent being confident that he’ll do what it takes to reward the team for their belief in the player?

  2. The GM and the HC are tied tightly together and in hot water within those first few years anyhow, so it has to work for them or they are gone, so naturally they are doubling down on their word that this was a smart decision. It has to be or why did you let them decide what to do if you are the Owner?

  3. I’m not sure that teams that typically keep their draft choices for the full rookie terms are better at scouting or just using a different management philosophy. Michael Oher was a genuine disappointment for the Ravens. He was drafted with the hope that he would be their long term left tackle. He couldn’t do the job, so they moved him to right tackle and he still performed poorly. They let him go in free agency without even trying to keep him. Perhaps another team would have jettisoned him much earlier, but that is not Ozzie’s way. They basically did the same thing with Travis Taylor, Kyle Boller, and Ben Grubbs.

  4. At first look at that picture I was wondering how Mike Evans had to settle for an an Arena League deal, then realized that’s just what Bucs jerseys look like these days.

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