MARCH 10, 7:30am: Brady’s extension is now official, according to Field Yates of ESPN.com, who reports (via Twitter) that it includes a $28MM signing bonus and $41MM in new money.
Brady’s cap hits for the next four years are now $14MM (2016), $14MM (2017), $22MM (2018), and $22MM (2019), tweets Yates. On the terms of his previous deal, the former Super Bowl MVP had been set to count for $15MM in 2016 and $16MM in 2017, so those charges have been slightly reduced.
MARCH 2, 2:50pm: Brady’s extension has yet to be officially finalized, according to Tom E. Curran of CSNNE.com, who says the two sides still need to iron out some financial details.
FEBRUARY 29, 9:05am: The Patriots and Tom Brady have reached an agreement on a two-year contract extension that will keep the star quarterback under team control through the 2019 season, sources tell Adam Schefter and Dianna Marie Russini of ESPN.com (Twitter link).
With Brady set to turn 39 this August, his previous contract had been set to take him through his age-40 season. Adding two more years to that deal means that the longtime Patriots quarterback has the chance to remain in New England until he’s 42, if he plays out the full contract.
Brady, an 11-time Pro Bowler, was as excellent as ever in 2015, throwing for 4,770 yards, 36 touchdowns, and just seven interceptions. Even as he approaches age 40, he shows no signs of slowing down — since he missed most of the 2008 season with a knee injury, Brady has averaged over 4,500 yards and 33 touchdowns per year from 2009 to 2015, making the Pro Bowl in each one of those seasons and not missing a single game.
Brady’s previous contract had been arguably the most team-friendly pact in the NFL, featuring cap hits between $13-15MM for the last three years. In 2016, Brady had been set to earn a $9MM base salary, with a cap number of $15MM. I’d expect the new agreement to reduce that cap charge a little, while giving the signal-caller some additional money up front, in the form of a new signing and/or roster bonus.
The extension for Brady will likely be the first in a series of moves for the Patriots, who have several other candidates for pay cuts, extensions, or outright releases. Chandler Jones, Dont’a Hightower, and Jamie Collins are among the team’s top candidates for extensions, while the contracts for Danny Amendola, Brandon LaFell, and Marcus Cannon could also be addressed. The Pats will, of course, have a handful of free agent decisions to make as well.
It will also be interesting to see whether Brady’s new deal affects backup quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo at all. Garoppolo’s rookie contract expires after the 2017 season, so although I don’t expect him to go anywhere this year, perhaps the Patriots will consider trading him next winter if Brady continues to perform at his current level. New England previously dealt Brady’s former backup, Ryan Mallett, heading into the final year of his rookie contract when it became clear he was no longer in the club’s long-term plans.
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