Short-term extension was key to getting David Johnson deal done

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Perhaps the best thing about Cardinals running back David Johnson‘s new contract is its duration. The fourth-year player signed only a three-year extension, committing him to the Cardinals for a total of four years.

Per a source with knowledge of the situation, the situation remained at impasse in large part because the Cardinals refused to do a short-term extension. The logjam regarding the duration of the contract suddenly broke on Friday night, and now a multi-year contract is in place for one of the best running backs in the game.

For Johnson, the offer became a no-brainer, once the commitment shrank to four years. With the franchise tag for running backs expected to be in the range of $11.3 million for 2019, Johnson would have made slightly less than $25 million in 2019 and 2020. Instead, he’ll make more than $30 million over those two years, with most if not all of it guaranteed.

So instead of going year to year for the next three years and assuming the risk of injury and ineffectiveness, Johnson will make what he would have made over the next three years, plus more than $5 million on top of it.

And since the deal carries only three new years, Johnson will become a free agent at a time when a new CBA likely will be in place, the TV deals will be ready to renew (and likely spike), and gambling revenue will be increasing.

19 responses to “Short-term extension was key to getting David Johnson deal done

  1. This is the wave of the future for players if they can resist the appearance of more money over more years (which isn’t guaranteed and really is only a team option). I suspect that we will see more deals like this.

  2. David Johnson is getting over $30 Million over two-years, meanwhile the Pittsburgh Steelers only offered Le’Veon Bell $14 Million a season. That’s a $2 Million (and some change) difference per year two year period.

    Le’Veon Bell was offered $14 Million a year.
    David Johnson got $15 Million a year.
    Le’Veon Bell wants $17 Million a year.
    Le’Veon Bell should settle for $16 Million a year and be done with it.

  3. David Johnson is getting over $30 Million over two-years, meanwhile the Pittsburgh Steelers only offered Le’Veon Bell $14 Million a season. That’s a $2 Million (and some change) difference per year over a two year period.

    Le’Veon Bell was offered $14 Million a year.
    David Johnson got $15 Million a year.
    Le’Veon Bell wants $17 Million a year.
    Le’Veon Bell should settle for $16 Million a year and be done with it.

  4. “the TV deals will be ready to renew (and likely spike)”

    Yes, because TV networks LOVE to pay even larger sums of money for programming that’s been consistently losing viewers each year for several years now…

  5. In 4 years he will be considered an old RB and will not get paid big bucks. Its the way the NFL treats all RB’s as they get close to 30 years old.

  6. “”Johnson will become a free agent at a time when a new CBA likely will be in place, the TV deals will be ready to renew (and likely spike), and gambling revenue will be increasing.””

    …and the NFL strike will be upon us.

  7. Good for him. Must have a great agent because I don’t see the motivation for the team to do this deal other than keeping him happy.

  8. Great for both parties, glad Keim got this done. This new deal ensures Josh Rosen will have the best dual threat weapon in the game at his disposal for the first several years of his career thru DJ’s prime.

  9. “Gambling revenue will be increasing”. That’s true, but How are the league or players going to harvest the money from gambling? It’s an honest question not being sarcastic here, there may well be some mechanism I am totally unaware of. But casinos or online companies taking bets, they aren’t required to give anything back to the league are they? Seems to me the only leverage the league has is actually not playing the games: as long as games are played and gambling is legal outside organizations can place wagers on them.

  10. David Johnson will be 27 in December, he was born on 12/16/91
    It makes no sense to do more than a 3 year extension, maybe that was a smokescreen by the club, other wise they are nuts because he’s not going to be anywhere near as productive 4 and 5 years form now.
    He is also returning from a major injury.

    He got a great deal. And it’s a reasonable deal for the team as well.
    His base numbers are lower than Gurleys but if he plays great and hits his incentives he gets more. Which is as it should be. Produce and get paid.

  11. I really think this is a great deal for both sides. Johnson is getting a ton of guaranteed money and the cards are getting him at a discount. Also, Johnson will be able to cash in big again in 3 years.

  12. If Johnson’s wrist don’t fold,
    If Larry’s legs don’t get old,
    If Bradford’s knee can hold,
    If Wilks’ coaching ain’t holed,
    This offense could be gold.

  13. It’s kind of unfair to judge the two situations in Bell and Johnson.

    In the Cardinals case, both sides played it exactly right. Open lines of communication, mutually interested in a deal. Johnson in camp, focused mentally and physically, and ready to go. Result, a win, win deal for team, and player. Johnson gets a great deal for his future…Cardinals get the 4 best years of Johnsons career before contract is up, not saddling them with albatross seasons. Oh, and Johnson is a good guy. No off field issues AT ALL, down to earth and humble.

    Exact OPPOSITE in Pittsburgh…

    No perceived communication between sides. Bell is not an ideal citizen, and the Steelers have done a horrible job of not keeping this in house. Now signing or not signing, there is big resentment for Bell all throughout the organization.

    Bottom line….one team communicated..

    One team didnt.

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