The Jets and troubled RB Mike Goodson have agreed to a contract renegotiation. Goodson, who had a well publicized arrest earlier this spring, was absent from all of training camp when he failed to report to the team. Goodson’s failure to report to the team could have been costly if the Jets did not support his reasons for missing training camp. He could have been fined $30,000 per day as well as nearly $60,000 for each preseason game he was unavailable for. The team also could have asked him to forfeit slightly over $80,000 in signing bonus money. This money would be on top of the four weeks of base salary and signing bonus allocation that he will be forced to surrender due to his league ordered drug suspension.
The sides appeared to come to a middle ground rather than going through any CBA related process of recovering money. Per a source with knowledge of the contract, Goodson reduced his base pay from $1 million to $715,000 in 2013, a loss of $285,000 on the season. In addition the team converted $650,000 and $850,000 of his Paragraph 5 salary in 2014 and 2015 respectively into roster bonuses.At this time I dont know if these are per game or standard roster bonuses, but considering his situation I would opt to think they may be the per game variety.
The deal was struck prior to Goodson’s suspension from the NFL becoming official on Saturday so the suspension money was based on a $715,000 base salary rather than a $1 million dollar base salary. Under his original contract he would have lost $235,294 in salary to the drug suspension, but that number will now be reduced to $168,235, which would make the actual salary loss $217,941.
However the numbers currently on file seem to indicate an actual cash take home that reflects a six game rather than a four game suspension. Goodson’s 2013 salary cap number is currently $798,080 rather than $882,198 that the four game suspension should leave him with. Teams do have options to suspend players for conduct, such as the Raiders decision to suspend Rolando McClain last season, but I don’t know if that is the case here as there could be other cap mechanisms at play. Just a bit of speculation on my end that I would think someone will clear up in the coming days as sometimes when there is this heavy volume of NFL transactions some numbers can get a bit mixed up in the process.
EDIT: I was informed that Goodson will lose two games to NFI status, which is where the other two lost paychecks come from in his contract renegotiation
Goodson had little option but to accept a pay cut from the Jets. With all his legal troubles no team in the NFL was going to touch him and the Jets could have fined him significantly and then cut him as soon as his league mandated suspension ended. This move likely allows the Jets to reclaim as much as they felt was reasonable after the bad PR that Goodson brought to the team this offseason.
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.