The Chicago Bears took heat for the trade that brought Nick Foles to Chicago. Looking at the contract restructure, however, it isn’t as bad as many thought.
When the Chicago Bears announced that they traded for quarterback Nick Foles for their fourth-round compensatory pick and that the Jacksonville Jaguars gave up nothing else, many were up in arms. With his huge contract, they felt the Jaguars had to throw in one of their draft picks to sweeten the deal. When they saw that the Jaguars unloaded the contract (even though they had to eat $18.75 million in dead cap money) without giving up a draft pick, they figured Jacksonville came out winning.
Foles was due about $51 million in salary over the next three seasons but that was completely changed. He had a base salary of $15.25 million for 2020. How in the world do the Chicago Bears take that on for a backup quarterback and get nothing else in return?
Well, most of the details of the restructure were unknown until just recently. All we knew at the time was that Foles could void the last two seasons of the deal depending on his play. It sounded crazy at the time the Bears agreed to the deal.
Now we know the details and it is much better than we thought. The Chicago Tribune Bears beat writer Brad Biggs tweeted the details of the new contract.
With "crazy" restructure, Nick Foles' base pay was cut by more than half to facilitate trade to #Bears.
What the QB got though is upside if he performs well & a chance to be a free agent in March if things go very well.
Maybe it's not crazy after all.https://t.co/8q8jFA1cf8
— Brad Biggs (@BradBiggs) April 6, 2020
Yes, Foles could void his deal in 2021 or 2022. The thing is, however, the Bears won’t owe him all that money should he stay. His new salary was drastically cut. Now his salary is something very friendly for the team:
- 2020: $4 million base salary, $4 million signing bonus
- 2021: $4 million base salary, $4 million roster bonus
- 2022: $4 million base salary, $4 million roster bonus
To put this salary in perspective, Chicago paid Chase Daniel $4 million in base salary and $2 million as a roster bonus. Foles is a better quarterback and the Bears will pay him just $2 million more in 2020. Even if Foles doesn’t beat out incumbent starter Mitchell Trubisky, the Bears now have a solid backup.
Altogether, the Chicago Bears will pay their top two quarterbacks about $17 million in 2020. That is about the same amount most teams in the league are paying their starting quarterback alone!
Yes, if Foles becomes the starter and has a good season the Bears will need to pay him more. That’s okay, though. They’ll have a season of production to justify a higher salary. Also, expect the Bears to draft a quarterback (Jalen Hurts?) who can step in in the case of the Bears losing both quarterbacks (Trubisky becomes a free agent in 2021 if the Bears don’t pick up his option).
The Chicago Bears’ quarterback situation is still teetering but if Foles plays well and stays it’ll be more settled.
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