As the Raiders make a decision regarding the future of receiver Antonio Brown, there’s a chance he ultimately will receive not a penny of the new contract he signed with the team in March.
PFT has obtained an analyzed a full copy of the contract. The $1 million signing bonus contained in the deal actually took the form of a pair of guaranteed $500,000 workout bonuses for 2019 and 2020. The 2019 payment nevertheless hinged upon Brown participating in at least 85 percent of the 2019 offseaon program.
Per a league source, NFLPA records reveal that he did not earn the $500,000, which means that he failed to participate in at least 85 percent of the offseason program. Thus, to date, Brown has gotten no payment from the Raiders under the contract.
And he may ultimately get none. Brown’s remaining guarantees of $29.625 million (2019 salary, 2020 workout bonus, 2020 salary) can be wiped out if he’s suspended. Actually, the language of the contract allows the guarantees to be voided even without a suspension; the behavior for which he was fined $53,950 already puts him in default.
Here’s the language from the contract, as to each guaranteed payment: “Notwithstanding this Skill, Injury, and Cap Guarantee, Player shall report to Club, practice with Club, play with Club, and honor all terms of the Contract, including all addenda thereto. If at any time player does not report to Club; does not practice or play with Club; leaves Club without prior written approval (including, but not limited to, retirement); does not honor any terms of the Contract (including any addenda thereto); is suspended by the NFL or Club for conduct detrimental, violation of the NFL Personal Conduct Policy, violation of agreements between Club and Player . . . then player shall be in default . . . and the Skill, Injury, and Cap guarantee shall be null and void and Player shall only be eligible to earn his remaining stated Paragraph 5 salary on a weekly, non-guaranteed basis.”
Because he left training camp for a day and otherwise missed a walkthrough practice, Brown already is in default. The Raiders could void the guarantees and cut him.
If, of course, they cut Brown, he becomes a free agent. Which means he can sign with anyone. The question would be whether anyone wants him — and whether the Raiders want to pay Brown anything in order to keep him from playing for anyone else.