Chris Long has restructured his contract according to Jim Thomas of the St Louis Post Dispatch, converting $6 million of his $13.25 million base salary into a roster bonus. The roster bonus, which is fully guaranteed, will be treated as a prorated signing bonus per CBA rules. This reduces Long’s cap charge from $13.25 million to $8.75 million, a savings of $4.5 million.
The Rams, right up against the salary cap, have a number of high priced contracts on their team making the restructure of Long a no brainer to gain enough cap room to finalize their roster. The move increases Long’s cap charges in 2014 to $14.7 million and increases dead money by $4.5 million, but with his salary fully guaranteed for 2014 and his position as best defensive player on the team he was never going anywhere anyway. Long had no dead money in his contract beyond 2014 and the addition of a small amount does not make a material difference in the event his play significantly declines over the next two years.
Jason is the founder of OTC and has been studying NFL contracts and the salary cap for over 15 years. Jason has co-authored two books about the NFL, Crunching Numbers and the Drafting Stage, which are widely circulated in the industry and hosts the OTC Podcast. Jason’s work has been featured in various publications including the Sporting News, Sports Illustrated, NFL Network and more. OTC is widely considered the leading authority on contract matters in the NFL.