It had to be one of the most stunning contract extensions in NFL history when the Washington Redskins agreed to what was reported as a five-year, $78 million extension ($40 million guaranteed) on Monday with QB Donovan McNabb just a few weeks after McNabb was benched late in the fourth quarter against the Lions with the game still in the balance.
It left many in the NFL asking why the Redskins would commit so much money to a player who the coaching staff apparently had lost faith in. Well, it turns out that the contract is nowhere near the commitment that it first appeared and that this could easily still be McNabb’s final season in Washington. The contract actually contains no guaranteed money beyond the current year.
The Redskins veteran will receive $3.5 million through the new deal’s signing bonus, in addition to his $5 million base salary and a $6.2 million roster bonus, for a total of $14.7 million this year.
Beyond 2010, there is nothing to protect McNabb from being cut by the team. He does have a $10 million 2011 option bonus that the club reserves the right to exercise up until the first game of the 2011 season. The Redskins will either need to pay it, triggering the rest of the contract, or part ways with McNabb before its due date. So really the Redskins paid McNabb $3.75 million in 2010 for the right to pay him $12.5 million in 2011 and control his rights. If the Redskins cut him after this season or trade him, they are only on the hook for the $3.75 million.
McNabb has struggled mightily at times this year and the Skins went out and got embarrassed on “Monday Night Football” just hours after McNabb got his new deal. He fumbled once, was sacked twice and threw three interceptions against the Eagles in the 59-28 loss.
Philly, McNabb’s former team, set team records for total yards in a game (592), points in a half (45) and had the biggest lead after the first quarter for any NFL road team (28-0) since at least 1950. Michael Vick, McNabb’s former backup, became the first player in NFL history with at least 300 yards passing, 50 yards rushing, four passing touchdowns and two rushing touchdowns in a game.
This week the Redskins are at the Tennessee Titans – bet on the game with Bodog’s NFL odds.
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