Perry’s third Packers contract will be worth $60MM over five years, Rob Demovsky of ESPN.com tweets. Perry will receive and $18.5MM signing bonus. In terms of AAV, Perry’s deal will fall into fifth place among 3-4 outside linebackers in terms of per-year dollars. The Packers now employ two of the top-five players here, with Clay Matthews‘ $13.2MM-per-year deal ranking third in that hierarchy.
The first three years of this deal will be quite player-friendly. Perry’s total cash flow in 2018 will hit $20.8MM, Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com reports (on Twitter). For the first three years, that figure jumps to $39MM.
Last year, Perry had career highs in starts (12), sacks (11) and tackles (52). Perry entered the year with only 16 starts and 12.5 sacks across 46 appearances. He entered free agency at just the right time and picked up interest from multiple clubs in need of a difference-maker in the front seven. The Falcons, Colts, and Jets were among the teams in the mix for him.
After Chandler Jones, Melvin Ingram, and Jason Pierre-Paul came off the board, Perry stood as our No. 1 edge defender on the open market. On my Top 50 list, which rates players by earning power, he was No. 18 overall.
The Packers still have free agents of their own to address, including Eddie Lacy, Julius Peppers, James Starks, T.J. Lang, J.C. Tretter, Jared Cook, and Micah Hyde. Green Bay entered today with $37MM-plus in cap space, so retaining multiple other members of this group isn’t out of the question for this build-from-within franchise. Hyde, though, is expected to depart.
This comes a year after Perry re-signed to stay in Green Bay after tepid interest elsewhere, but after a standout season that came in what amounted to a second contract year, the soon-to-be 27-year-old edge player won’t come nearly as cheap. This continues the Packers’ pattern of prioritizing their own, following re-signings of Perry in 2016 and keeping the likes of Randall Cobb and Bryan Bulaga a year prior once they became UFAs. Perry will miss officially hitting the open market by a few hours.
Sam Robinson contributed to this report.