- Kevin Seifert, NFL Nation
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Some financial figures are starting to come in for linebacker Clay Matthews' contract extension with the Green Bay Packers. But the most important information -- its salary-cap structure -- might not be available until the paperwork is filed and processed by the NFL.
Here's what has been reported thus far:
The deal adds five years to Matthews' current deal, which -- as ESPN's Adam Schefter notes -- means he is tied to the Packers through the 2018 season. Matthews will be 32 at that point.
The "new money" represented in those five years is $66 million, according to Tom Silverstein of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. That averages to $13.2 million, pushing Matthews' annual average above the previous benchmark for NFL linebackers set by the Dallas Cowboys' DeMarcus Ware ($13 million). When you add the $3.77 million Matthews was set to earn in 2013, you get a grand total of $69.77 million over six years.
According to Schefter, the Packers committed to about $31 million in guaranteed money.
ESPN's Darren Rovell reports Matthews will receive $22 million in cash by the end of 2013 and $27 million over the next 12 months.
To get to those numbers, the contract almost assuredly combines base salary and bonuses. But the proportion of each category, to this point unknown, will largely determine Matthews' cap figures. Did the Packers front-load it to absorb as much of a cap hit as they could now? Did they backload it for the opposite intent? Or are the cap numbers relatively equal over time using a pay-as-you-go model? That's what we'll be looking for over the next hours and perhaps days.