The details are in on the deal signed by new Raiders safety Reggie Nelson. And while the contract technically is, as initially reported elsewhere, worth “up to” $12 million over two years, only one third of the amount is guaranteed.
Per a source with knowledge of the terms of the deal, Nelson receives a $2 million roster bonus on April 15 and a fully-guaranteed $2 million base salary in 2016.
Another $4 million is available in 2017, in the form of a $2.75 million non-guaranteed salary and a $1.25 million roster bonus due in March of next year. The roster bonus becomes fully guaranteed if Nelson participates in 65 percent of the team’s defensive plays in 2016.
The remaining $4 million in potential earnings comes from a $250,000 workout bonus each year and $1.75 million per season in incentives tied to playing time, interceptions, and Pro Bowl appearances.
One of the reasons Nelson didn’t sign sooner is that he was looking for a much better deal. It’s possible that a better deal than the one he signed with the Raiders was available in early March from the Bengals, but that he gave up the bird in the hand for, ultimately, a smaller bird in the bush.