The Patriots came to terms on a one-year free agent contract for Julian Edelman on April 11, but on Thursday, Edelman's contract was slightly re-negotiated.
The original terms of the deal included a $50,000 offseason workout bonus (details here), but under the new deal, $40,000 of that offseason workout bonus has been converted to a roster bonus for being on the 53-man roster for Week 1, according to a league source. In addition, the financial amounts tied to his receptions incentives have been slightly altered, but the maximum value of the contract remains $1.015 million, the source said.
While we don't know for certain why the terms were re-negotiated, it seems logical that the team and Edelman would agree to an altered deal because of a recent re-injury to the right foot that Edelman broke in Week 13 of last season. That's kept him off the field at the start of OTA's and has likely prevented him from taking part in the majority of the offseason program workouts.
Edelman's deal did not include any guaranteed money when he signed it, which was likely a reflection of the fact that he has had some struggles staying healthy during the first four years of his career and was coming off of foot surgery. If Edelman returns to health and makes the 53-man roster at the conclusion of training camp and remains on it for Week 1, he'll make back much of the money that was to be available through the workout program. He's long been one of the team's hardest workers, and this could be a situation where they don't want to penalize an injured player who is forced to miss the offseason program with the idea in mind that he was likely to be a full participant if healthy.
The base salary for Edelman's contract for 2013 is $715,000, with additional money to be earned if he eclipses specific reception barriers. Essentially, this is a deal that rewards him for staying healthy and producing.