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Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Do the Patriots owe Antonio Brown signing bonus money after releasing him?

Antonio Brown was released by the New England Patriots on Friday afternoon as the team decided he was no longer worth the trouble of carrying on their roster. The move instantly left many wondering how much money the team owes him.

When Brown officially signed with the Patriots on Monday, Sept. 9, he received a one-year deal worth up to $15 million and with $10 million supposedly guaranteed. The structure of the deal included:

– $1 million base salary
– $500,000 roster bonus
– $9 million signing bonus spread into two installments
– $4.5 million in incentives ($1.5 million for each of last year’s stats he surpassed – receptions, yards and touchdowns)

Brown’s Patriots career lasted just one game. He was officially signed by the team on Monday, Sept. 9 and was released by them 11 days later on Friday, Sept. 20.

As of now, he stands to have collected two weekly checks for his 11 days with the team. His first signing bonus payment of $5 million was not due until Monday. The Patriots can void the deal citing Brown’s conduct that was detrimental to the team.

According to Spotrac, Brown made just under $154,000 in his 11 days with the team and leaves behind dead cap hits of $5.5 million in 2019 and $4.5 million for 2020 due to his signing bonus being spread out. The money is likely to be credited back to the team.

The Patriots structured the deal so that they would not be financially hamstrung if things did not work out. After harassing text messages Brown sent to a second accuser were publicized, the team likely decided they’d had enough.

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