Cleat Geeks

Palmer now in same boat as Fitzgerald

According to Kent Somers the Cardinals have officially restructure QB Carson Palmer‘s contract and will free up $7.1 million in cap space in the process. They did this by simply converting Palmer’s roster bonus into a signing bonus. But, as I hinted to in the title of this piece there is a huge problem with this contract.

It is just like the Larry Fitzpatrick delima of this year. First let’s go back a few years to 2011 when receiver Larry Fitzgerald signed a third huge contract with the Cardinals, it was obvious both sides would return to the bargaining table before the start of the 2015 off-season. That’s because Fitzgerald was scheduled to make $16 million with an even larger hit of $23.6 million toward the cap, inflated figures designed to force both team and player to re-evaluate their relationship. That hurdle  was finally completed when the Cardinals announced Fitzgerald had agreed to a two-year contract that will pay him $22 million, all guaranteed. Obviously, that’s $9 million less than Fitzgerald was scheduled to make, but with the previous contract none of that $31 million was guaranteed and now all $22 million of this new contract is guaranteed. But on the bright side for the Cardinals his new contract does trim $13 million off the 2015 salary cap.

Now back to the Carson Palmer contract and it’s similarities to the Fitzgerald contract. In changing Palmer’s roster bonus to a signing bonus will mean that in 2016 Palmer’s salary cap figure is going to be $19 million and for 2017 it will increase to $22.6 million. Now also, keep in mind, that Palmer is currently 35 years old and no spring chicken with a history of severe knee injuries. Palmer was actually paid in full his signing bonus on Thursday all $9.5 million of it.

Palmer, himself, confirmed that he had agreed to rework his contract to help the Cardinals cap situation before the start of free agency, so this is really more of a confirmation.

Palmer signed a four-year, $58.5 million contract that included $14.235 million guaranteed with the Cardinals back in November of last year, which was just days before he sustained a season-ending ACL injury. He has base salaries of $1 million (2015), $6.35 million (2016), and $8.15 million (2017) coming his way over the next three years. However, the deal also includes sizable roster bonuses as well.

In 2014, Palmer threw for 1,626 yards while completing 62.9 percent of his passes to go along with 11 touchdowns and just three interceptions.

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