APRIL 19: Peterson’s option is expected to officially picked up on Monday, tweets Jason Cole of Yahoo! Sports.
MARCH 26: The Cardinals plan to discuss a contract extension for Patrick Peterson this offseason, but they are under no time constraints in reaching an agreement. The team plans to exercise an option before then to keep the cornerback under contract through 2015, according to Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic. Arizona has until May 3rd to officially exercise the option.
The Cards can use that option thanks to a provision in the collective bargaining agreement that will benefit clubs as they seek to retain players from the 2011 draft. That draft class, the first under the current CBA, came into the NFL under a new set of contract rules, meaning that first-round picks like Peterson were required to sign four-year deals that included a club option for year five. Top ten picks such as Peterson (No. 5) receive a salary worth the average of the ten highest paid players at their position this season. In Peterson’s case, that means a $10MM salary.
The Cardinals’ decision to pick up the option was expected, because it allows them to keep an elite player under contract and gives the team leverage in negotiations for an extension. With two years remaining on his rookie deal, and the possibility of a franchise tag, the Cardinals could retain Peterson’s rights through 2016.