Closer look at Shiancoe contract

July, 25, 2012
Taking a closer look at the one-year contract signed by veteran tight end Visanthe Shiancoe, and analyzing what it might mean for the Patriots:

Term: 1 year
Base salary: $1.2 million
Guaranteed: $400,000 of base salary
Incentives: $800,000
Salary cap charge: $1.2 million

The incentives break down this way (for a possible total of $800,000):

$160,000 -- Plays 45 percent or more of the offensive plays
$160,000 -- Plays 50 percent or more of the offensive plays
$160,000 -- Plays 55 percent or more of the offensive plays
$160,000 -- Plays 60 percent or more of the offensive plays
$160,000 -- Plays 65 percent or more of the offensive plays

ANALYSIS: This deal is greater than I believed the Patriots would offer ($400,000 guaranteed is the key), and it reflects that Shiancoe is likely to be on the team's 53-man roster coming out of training camp. With veteran Daniel Fells opening training camp on the physically unable to perform list, the signing of Shiancoe to this type of deal makes it a stronger possibility that Fells could stay on PUP into the season, with the Patriots taking a more conservative approach with his rehab from a leg injury. Bill Belichick has annually utilized the PUP list as a way to build depth on the roster. Last year, four players were on PUP or the non-football injury list at the start of the regular season, and all were eventually activated and helped the club later in the year (Brandon Deaderick, Ron Brace, Kevin Faulk, Marcus Cannon). From Shiancoe's perspective, those playing-time incentives might be tough to reach as a third tight end behind Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez, but if either top tight end suffers an injury, the incentives could become more easily attained.

Mike Reiss

ESPN New England Patriots reporter



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