Exploring details of Darius Slay's restructured contract


Last week we learned about Darius Slay’s restructured contract but now we have some more details to look over.

Slay’s restructured deal lowers his cap hit from $15,750,000 in 2021 to $7,110,000, according to a league source. That’s a savings of $8.65 million, slightly lower than what was initially reported.

The way the Eagles restructured this contract was by taking Slay’s initial $12 million base salary in 2021 and turning $10.925 million of it into a roster bonus that acts like a signing bonus. That means it prorates over the length of the contract, which is now technically five years. The Eagles added two voidable years on the end of the contract for cap purposes.

In 2021, Slay has a base salary of $1.075 million, a workout bonus of $500,000 and prorated bonus money of $5.535 million for a cap hit of $7.11 million. (Slay was already owed a $500K workout bonus but the Eagles added another one that prorates over the five years for cap purposes.)

But Slay’s cap hits for the following two seasons rise dramatically. The thought here is that the overall cap in the NFL will rise significantly in future years after we get beyond the pandemic and the new TV deal comes through. The Eagles will be in a much better position to handle big cap hits in coming years.

Here’s a summary of Slay’s next three seasons:

2021 base salary: $1,075,000

2021 cap hit: $7,110,000

2022 base salary: $16,000,000

2022 cap hit: $22,035,000

2023 base salary: $17,000,000

2023 cap hit: $23,035,000

This restructure makes it more likely that the Eagles keep Slay through the 2022 season as long as he still plays at a relatively high level. The Eagles could theoretically cut Slay this time next offseason but it would save just $4.3 million and create over $17 million in dead money. The dead figure is created from bonus money acceleration and $2 million in guaranteed base salary in 2022.

In addition to that $2 million in guaranteed base salary for the 2022 year, another $2 million becomes fully guaranteed if Slay is on the roster on the third day of the 2022 league year. So there’s a loose deadline in place next year.

After the 2022 season, Slay will be 32 and the Eagles could then choose to move on. Cutting him around this time in two years would still leave over $10 million in dead money but would save nearly $13 million in cap space. But that’s something for the Eagles to figure out if/when they get there.

Even if Slay plays out the entire three years, he’ll still leave behind a dead cap charge of over $4.5 million in 2024.

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