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#pounditMonday, June 17, 2024

Taylor Heinicke taking sizable pay cut to remain with Falcons

Taylor Heinicke at the podium

Taylor Heinicke is sticking around in Atlanta but is taking a good-sized trim to do so.

Michael Rothstein of ESPN reported Tuesday that the veteran quarterback Heinicke has agreed to a restructuring of his contract with the Falcons that will see him get a notable reduction in pay in 2024. Heinicke’s previously-expected base salary of $5 million for next season is reportedly dropping down to just $1.2 million. The 31-year-old also agreed to the removal of a $40,000 per game active roster bonus in his contract, Rothstein adds.

For the Falcons, who just gave a gigantic contract to their new starter Kirk Cousins, the restructuring of Heinicke’s deal nets them roughly $4.4 million in cap savings. Meanwhile, the Georgia native Heinicke gets to stick around in Atlanta for a second season.

Heinicke, a six-year NFL veteran, was mainly a backup to Desmond Ridder last season but drew four total starts after the Falcons benched Ridder. He went 1-3 in those starts, throwing for 715 yards with four TDs and four INTs.

Ridder, traded to Arizona last month, is no longer around. But Cousins has now arrived, and the Falcons, who have eight picks in the first six rounds of this year’s draft, could still select another QB. Nevertheless, it makes sense for Heinicke to stay put in his home state at a reduced rate, especially with all the extra bonus money he has already secured in his career.

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