A note on Wendell's deal

March, 28, 2014
Mar 28
9:15
PM ET
Earlier today, we passed along the terms on Ryan Wendell's two-year deal with the Patriots, per NFLPA records obtained.

The breakdown was a maximum value of $8.15 million, a number that seemed a little high for a player who hadn't generated a ton of interest in free agency and endured struggles last season.

The details of the contract have not been submitted to the NFL's management council department, though that should come shortly after the deal is made official (we'd expect that in the coming days).

NFLPA documents are largely accurate, but the numbers submitted to the management council are the figures of record. So until we have those details, we won't have 100 percent confirmation on the overall value.

In looking at the NFLPA information, it was noted that Wendell has a roster bonus of $12,500 per game for each season, which would, if he played all 16 games, equal $200,000 per year. It also lists an overall roster bonus of $2 million per season.

The Patriots have just two players -- offensive tackle Sebastian Vollmer and cornerback Brandon Browner -- with a roster bonus over $750,000.

Vollmer's roster bonus is $2 million, something that derived from his injury history prior to signing the deal. Roster bonuses serve as a measure of protection for teams.

Meanwhile, Browner has a roster bonus of up to $2.3 million, again serving as protection for the team for a player who has a four-game suspension ahead of him and faces further punishment if he repeats previous offenses.

Wendell has been durable (he's played all but six offensive snaps the past two seasons), making it even less likely that the team would institute a roster bonus of that figure.

It could be that the NFLPA records listed a roster bonus of $2 million inadvertently, as the figure perhaps should have been $200,000 total, not $2 million.

If so, Wendell's contract would have a maximum value of $4.55 million over two years. That number is closer to what we might have projected for Wendell to fetch in free agency.

The Patriots don't have an extensive track record of robust roster bonuses, especially not for a player who has a reliable history in terms of games and snaps played.

Again, we don't have the official figures at this time. The numbers from the NFLPA could prove to be accurate, but for now we're in wait-and-see mode to get the final word.
Field Yates has previous experience interning with the New England Patriots on both their coaching and scouting staffs. A graduate of Wesleyan University (CT), he is a regular contributor to ESPN Boston's Patriots coverage and ESPN Insider.

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