Extra money for lesser paid Cards

Posted by Darren Urban on March 24, 2014 – 1:59 pm

Part of the collective bargaining agreement is the performance-based pay system every season. Each team has a pool of money — this year it is $3.46 million — to distribute among all the players who played for it the previous season. The money is doled out based on playing time and the amount of money you made in the first place. In other words, think of the lesser paid players (rookies, cheap starters) who played a ton. They get the most cash. There is a caveat. Players don’t actually get the money until April 1, 2016, an agreement made by the players’ union in a trade to have a larger 2013 salary cap.

For the Cardinals, safety Yeremiah Bell made the most. Bell was paid just $905,000 last season (adjusted, with his veteran status, to a $621,000 salary cap hit) but played almost 80 percent of the defensive snaps. That earned him an extra $263,097.

Nine Cardinals total earned an extra six figures through the distribution:

— T Bradley Sowell $247,150 ($480,000 adjusted compensation last season)
— G Paul Fanaika $223,625 ($683,500)
— S Tyrann Mathieu $209,788 ($570,625)
— TE Jim Dray $165,375 ($647,850)
— S Tony Jefferson $131,510 ($408,366)
— WR Jaron Brown $125,954 ($408,000)
— RB Andre Ellington $125,680 ($430,966)
— DL Frostee Rucker $104,261 ($624,200)

Everybody who played in a game got something — even linebacker Vic So’oto, who signed in Week 4 and briefly played against Tampa Bay before suffering an injury that ended his Arizona tenure. Of the nine, Dray, of course, is gone, having signed with the Browns. Bell is unsigned but there is still a chance the Cards could bring him back. The other seven are on the roster and figure to be a part of the 2014 roster.


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28 Responses to “Extra money for lesser paid Cards”

  1. By Big Ken on Mar 24, 2014 | Reply

    Definitely a group of ‘unsung’ guys listed.

  2. By Mike G on Mar 24, 2014 | Reply

    Hey Darren- Hope all is cool. I think the Cards have had a nice offseason so far with their signings. Also–looking forward to the draft and I’m sure Keim is pretty busy working on his prospects to pick in the draft. Hey–Darren–have you seen or heard how Ta’amu is progressing with his rehab from his injury??? Hope he can come back– he was big for the Card’s last season.

  3. By Darren Urban on Mar 24, 2014 | Reply

    Mike G —

    RE: Ta’amu

    He’s here every day. Other than that, it’s early in the process.

  4. By ored on Mar 24, 2014 | Reply

    as long it’s not detrimantl to the team,i’m all for any extra money for the lunch pail guys.wish more contracts were incentive based instead of guaranteed,that would seem the best path to competetive playing time and salary.

  5. By CreditCard on Mar 24, 2014 | Reply

    I like the blue collar lunch pale boys. These guys got it done without much fanfare.

  6. By CreditCard on Mar 24, 2014 | Reply


    I’ve always liked Champ Bailey, as a player and person. Classy guy. Even though cornerback plays next to safety, they very well could be miles apart in terms of type of skill sets a player needs.

    If Champ Bailey was proficient at safety, and inexpensive — he might be a very prospect for safety. Imagine, PP, Cromartie, Mathieu, Bailey and Powers (as a slot corner) — talk about one of the more athletic and instinctive secondaries in football.

    Just thought. Bailey very well could have lost a step or two, and be lost at safety

  7. By Ricky on Mar 24, 2014 | Reply

    Hey, completely unrelated to the article but just a suggestion, you should add a comment section to video.. I feel like a comment section will allow everyone to connect better..

  8. By Andy Kw on Mar 24, 2014 | Reply

    Right now, Free Agency will continue for this team after the 2014 NFL Draft so lets start talking (This draft will focus on the future of the defense):
    1.) DT Ra’shede Hagemen (Minnesota), 6’6” 310lbs
    -This guy is the most atheltic Defensive Tackle in the draft. He is explosive and should the DT Darnell Dockett’s replacement.
    2.) SS Deone Bucannon (Washington St.), 6’1” 211lbs
    -His reminds me of a similar safety in the NFL (Earl Thomas). This guy is a strong hitter, has excellent awareness on the field, tall for his position, and has too much upside. Instead of looking for a starting safety in FA, lets make him our future with Tyrann Mathieu at Free Safety and Patrick Peterson as our number one Cornerback.
    3.) CB Stanley Jean-Baptiste (Nebraska) 6’3” 218lbs
    -His size is perfect, his man to man skills are pretty good, and reminds me of a mix between Richard Sherman and Brandon Browner. He has Browner’s physicality and has Sherman’s leap ability. I am not sure if he will be the starter but he could develop behind Cromartie to possibly grow into the CB2 role.
    4.) OLB Ronald Powell (Florida), 6’3” 237lbs
    -I cannot express how impressed I am with this outside linebacker. He displays a lot of quickness and can rush the passer with that speed of his. He can play on the outside and grab interceptions. This guy can do it all.
    5.) WR (any speed wide receiver)
    6.) QB Tom Savage (Pittsburgh) 6’4” 228lbs
    -He has the strongest arm in the NFL Draft. He can throw deep balls but needs to work on his accuracy and consistency. He would be a nice developmental QB. For a 6th Round Pick, I say he is worth the risk since he fits into Bruce Arians’ system.

    Please comment, give some predictions and what you think of my mock draft. John the Draft Guy or anybody

  9. By Coach K on Mar 24, 2014 | Reply

    I think it’s a good list Andy. I have read that Hagemen is a big teddy bear and his coaches at Minnesota have tried several times to light a fire under him. I find this a bit worrisome. When he is on, he’s a beast. But taking plays off is not good. I love Bucannon and Baptiste. Savage is not mobile, but has that good arm. However, I think the Virginia Tech kid has a bigger upside.

  10. By Dynosoar on Mar 24, 2014 | Reply

    Andy KW,

    I’ve rarely studied much of the college players and what they would bring to the draft. What I can say is whether you’ve put together the perfect draft roster or not I don’t know, but you have thought it out and done your homework and have solid reasoning for each of your picks.

    I am curious, given the difficulties we had covering TE’s, what is the reasoning behind choosing a DE in the first and not an SS? I like the reasoning behind your #5 choice. (grin)

    One of those thumbs up is mine.

  11. By shannon robinson on Mar 25, 2014 | Reply

    Love the extra bonus money for playing time – these guys produced beyond their contracts. I always forget about this dough until it drops. Speaking of extra money, Justin Bethel is about to win a quick lottery when he settles with Cromartie for #31. It will be fun to see what providence brings – lucky number! Just a quick comment on D Washington’s deal : 1) He’ll perform his way from felony to misdemeanor with good behavior on probation. Most people violate with drug use which won’t happen to him in the NFL structure. 2) The mother of his child will have incentive to advocate on his behalf because big time difference in child support is on the line. They have obviously learned how to interact on child visitation more gracefully. 3) When you break someone’s arm it doesn’t matter whose fault it is – hard lesson learned. Express sincere regret and we can all move on.

  12. By JohnnyBluenose on Mar 25, 2014 | Reply

    Nice to see Bell being rewarded for his efforts last year. Having said that, it is not often that I feel sorry for someone whose yearly salary was only $905K.

  13. By John The Draft Guy on Mar 25, 2014 | Reply

    Alright Andy KW,

    Here is my opinion.

    Round 1 – Hageman – I think he is the classic Boom or Bust guy. You watch his highlight tapes and man he is exciting. But I watched a couple games this year (cant remember against who) and he didn’t excite me. He takes plays off, is easily double teamed. For all the physical tools he has, I thought I would see more from him. I feel Tuitt is a safer pick if I went Dline.

    Round 1 for me – I think we take Calvin Pryor.

    Round 2 – Deone Bucannon – Earl Thomas?? Thomas is a classic FS center fielder . I think Bucannon reminds me more of someone we had here in AZ named Adrian Wilson. Bucannon is not great covering one on one, he takes poor angles and will struggle against the likes of Vernon Davis. But like Wilson, he is a big hitter who makes plays. More of a in the box kind of guy in the NFL. Just depends if that is what you are looking for in your SS.

    My Second round pick – this name you may not know but fits the AZ cards to a tee. . Kelcy Quarles DT/DE , South Carolina. This is a high motor guy who can get in the back field. A perfect player to take over for DD once he moves on.

    3rd round – Im not sure about Batiste. But I will give you a name to look up. OLB Demarcus Lawrence. As they say in Boise, you can’t escape D Law.
    Listed as a DE, he is a guy who can stand up and rush the passer or drop into coverage. I think a year behind Abraham would allow him to get into the weight room and get bigger and stronger, but he already has a variety of pass rushing moves and could be a steal.

    Just my opinion but take a look at these players.

  14. By Dynosoar on Mar 25, 2014 | Reply

    Regarding the Bracketology voting for today,

    I’d vote for “Raging Bull” with Floyd over “Bombs away” with Roberts, but this is interesting to me because…

    Would Floyd even be on here if he hadn’t made the touchdown? Maybe. Maybe not. Who insured the touchdown… yeah, Roberts. So Roberts is featured in both, one scoring and the other enabling the score.

    Interesting match up and fun to remember both plays. (Especially watching the 49er defender get beat and then make a weak attempt to justify the touchdown, by motioning to the ref that Roberts had pushed off. That was good for a laugh.)

    I’ll miss having Roberts on our team, probably as much as the Redskins will rejoice for having him on their team. The best teams win and they win because the system allows players to shine and excel. I’m looking forward to watching what Ginn brings to our offense, he comes from a winning organization so he’ll bring that mentality and be a playmaker just as Roberts was (and is).

    We’ll have a grand fine season and Darren will have a harder time next March choosing which plays to put in the Bracketology.

  15. By br on Mar 25, 2014 | Reply

    Not trying to be a butthead ( I’ll keep the rating at PG) BUut Ihave a question not just for this mock draft but most I have seen on here…everyone has a defensive draft maybe one late round offensive ” project” but that is it, my question is why would everyone lean so heavily on the defensive side of the ball when we had one of the best defenses in the league? Other than ILB depth and a SS that can cover TE’s I think the other picks should go offensive. Here’ my reasoning…Right side of OL we have none basically, especially RT.TE, still very weak, yes we resigned Ballard ( i think was a top 3 offseason move, along with Shaugnessy, and of course Veldheer!) but Carlson is njry prone and has not proven he can stay healthy, and Housler has yet to “breakout” and may never. Palmer, while i think he is the best we have had since future HOF’er Mr Warner, and i believe he will be much improved this year but only if we solidify the o-line, add a blocking first TE and a fast as he(double hockey sticks) WR…bottom line in my opinion the offense needs alot more work than the defense (other than ILB which i think needs veteran depth and maybe a couple of UDFA’s to possibly strike gold witth. Use one pick on a SS since he would have veteran support in the secondary, and the rest of the picks (especially the1st rd) should be offensive. Now if one of the two top CB’s or any top ten rated happens to fall in our laps…then by god all bets are off, snag the CB at #20! Dang i almost forgot my main point…seeing alot of Dee Ford #20, thats what confuses me when we have 3 young OLB’s/Pass Rushers coming back plus one of the best ever in Abraham, dont see the need this yr for anymore, if Abraham play drops and his age starts to show then draft a stud to replace him next year, orsign a free agent in 2015. I say if we want home field advantage for the SUPER BOWL next year Offensive upgrades/ draft picks need to be top priority not defense. Ok gents have at it, tear into it…just keep in mind I had no personal attacks or name calling on anyone, just wanted to add to the discussion/debate with my two cents. Meanwhile I’m going to put together my next installment of “draft steal/sleepers and small school diamonds” since I know you guys ( and hopefully) gals have been chomping at the bit to read! LOL!!!!!!

  16. By John The Draft Guy on Mar 25, 2014 | Reply


    I can only answer for myself, but this is why I go that route.

    I have watched Watford live and feel he is more than capable of taking over this year at RG. They also brought in a vet who has started along with Faniaka. I also believe the cards will not draft a young RT. Either they will resign Winston or allow Sowell and Massie battle it out. Therefore, the oline is done.

    TEs – I would not be surprised if in round 3 or 4 , a TE is drafted. I just do not feel it is a need and it would really depend on your board.

    WR – with the signing of Ginn, I really do not see the need for the speed WR. I do see the need for another WR to be drafted to play behind Fitz and Floyd. I like Moncrief in the 3rd round but again, the board dictates it.

    I see zero need to draft a QB in the first two rounds. Unless Borles dropped.

    So, no offense in the first two rounds.

    Why defense,
    Dockett is older and carries a huge cap number, it is time to start grooming his replacement. A guy like Quarles would fit just fine.

    Abraham is older and we saw what a dominant pass rusher can do from Abraham this year. Acho is in an important year as he hasnt shown he can be dominant, but has shown he can play. Okefer has shown nothing as he was hurt all last year. Bernard is a nice vet for depth and Shaghnessy is more of a hybrid who also doesnt have a dominant pass rush. I think I would like to find a young guy who can put up double digit sacks each year and I dont believe we have him.
    Ealy, Barr are guys in the first round who could be that guy, but a sleeper like Boise’s D Law could be a steal.

    We all agree that a young safety is needed. It just makes sense.

    At CB, unless we have a Justin Gilbert fall in our lap, I dont find it a big need.But both Cro and Powers are in their last year of contract.

    So looking at the big picture, it just makes sense to go heavy on defense.

  17. By br on Mar 25, 2014 | Reply


    My only point is our defense is already elite and kept us in amd even won us some games, whereas are offense was horrid at times, although vastly improved the second half of the seaaon. First let me say I envy you…getting to see the boys live, that must be awesome! On tje o-line i just dont see the right side as done Winston could be snatched up by another team at anytime and neither of tje otjer two grade out very well.As far as Watford goes I will just have to trust your word as well as BAand staff, which they have earned it in the very short time they have been in AZ (I’m probably a tad bit biased but I think BA should have got coach of the year!)

    Would love to see Carda sign Owen Daniels as 4th TE. Iagree no QB early except Bortles (which we both know he will be long gone by #20) Guin is not the answer at speed receiver, cant catch, poor route running, still very fast but doesnt do much good to be behind the “D” if you cant hold on to the ball. SS in rd 2-3 is a need and would have no problem with that. OLB I just think we are fine, plus CC should pick up sack production should be a stud in all areas with that huge contract.
    What really wories me on “D” is ILB, we need to look into probably 2 veteran FA’s and a couple of UDFA’s hopefully finding a gem waiting to be polished! I have this sick feeling we lose DWASH for 6-8 games…to be continued, family emergency i have to take care of!

  18. By br on Mar 25, 2014 | Reply

    Ok I have returned (my son decided to try and pass a kidney stone, he has dad’s great genes!! LOL…except when passing a stone!!)
    I’m not saying every pick be offense but needs are greater on that side of the ball, iff both Martin/OL and Moseley /ILB are both there at #20 it is going to be a tough choice, in that scenario I think I would probably go ILB only because the OT prospects are much deeper (though I’m so glad I dont have to make the actual pick!) Then go OL in 2nd then SS in 3rd Loston if he is still available at that point I believe rest of the picks go offense. So 1st & 3rd “D” and rest of picks “O”…with 5rd snaging of L. Thomas/QB (among other positions if QB pro

  19. By br on Mar 25, 2014 | Reply

    Dang I despise the placement of that “POST COMMENT” button!!!!!
    As I was saying before the post button got in the way…I like the idea of Thomas/QB in 5th and if QB project doesnt wprk out he can surely be a very dangerous all purpose weapon especially in red zone. Thanks for hearing me out and thanks for the “meeting of the mimds” debate, thats what makes these forums interesting, in the end we are all on the same team or at least pull for

  20. By John The Draft Guy on Mar 25, 2014 | Reply


    There are still TEs like Owen Daniels, Tony Scheffler, and Dustin Keller who could come very cheap in another month or so.

    Again, I like Ballard, Carlson and Housler and feel pretty good with going with these three, but I could see us going with a forth.

  21. By Eazy E on Mar 25, 2014 | Reply

    No Thanks to Yeremiah. He didn’t do a horrible job but in terms of replacing the boy Kerry naw.

  22. By ChristianR on Mar 25, 2014 | Reply

    @John the Draft Guy, @Andy Kw, and @br

    I think we should focus equally on offense and defense. Yes, our offense was weaker than our defense last year, but our defense was not #1, so there is room for improvement there. We also need to prepare the D to stay at the level it’s at with age and departures hurting us. We can still help the offense by adding a more reliable speed receiver and a blocking TE, though.
    As far as the offensive line, I think we are ready there (knock on wood). We know the left side is set, and C has been solid. Massie has shown the potential to be he best at his position. That just leaves RG, and I think Watford is ready to impress there. We also have to remember that the Cardinals signed Larsen, who can play C or RG.
    As far as the mock draft goes, I agree that Tuitt is better than Hageman. I like Bucannon because he reminds me of Wilson, but I personally think Loston fits better due to his coverage abilities, and he can be had in the third. That leaves the 2nd open to getting a guy like Devante Adams (if he falls that far) or Austin Seferian-Jenkins (good receiving TE with a lot of potential as a blocker). I am a Housler fan, but I wouldn’t be surprised if a TE was taken in the draft. I also think that we’ll look more for a ILB than an OLB in the later rounds. I like Max Bullough in the 4th, but that’s just me. I also agree with taking a project QB either in the 6th or if we trade into the 7th, but I think that Jeff Mathews is worth as much consideration as Tom Savage. I would be happy with either, though. I know it’s all up to the Cardinals and their draft board, but I just wanted to add my humble opinion.

  23. By Dre on Mar 25, 2014 | Reply

    Andy Kw,

    I have seen a bunch of mock drafts who seem to think we need to draft a DT in the first round in preparation to replace Dockett. i believe this to be absurd…

    I really don’t get the top priority to find a replacement for Darnell Dockett. Dockett is a captain, a out-spoken vocal and emotional leader of a defense that ranked number one in the NFL. He promoted gap responsibility and took pride in stopping the run plus he was a key player in achieving the honor of that number one ranking in run defense. Oh by the way, Dockett was a third round draft (64) pick who started every game a rookie.

    The last defensive line player we drafted in the 1st round was Dan Williams who didn’t take over the starting role until his second season. Dan has been a good player for the Cards but should provided more of an impact being a 1st round pick.

    Campbell was a second round pick and was the best tackle in the league next to JJ Watt last year. He played behind Antonie Smith (5th round pick), a soon to be free agent, as a rookie in 2008 before taking over that staring job.

    The Cards need depth on the defensive line to battle within the division, It seem the 49ers and Seahawks like to pound the ball on the ground first and then throw. If you recall last year, the set out to be better against the run which they accomplished and they are still being proactive with their goal. So, we can find plenty of guys to fill this need in the 2nd, 3rd or 4th round, even the 5th round.

    I believe 1st round picks are pro ready and should be day one starters or be a impact player for their new team. If you draft a player who can’t give you that for whatever reason, you lose out on the true value of a 1st round pick which sets the progress of the team back. Johnathan Cooper would be terrific examples despite being inked in as the starting left guard prior to the season ending injury.

    Round 2 – Deone Bucannon gets two thumbs up.

    I wrote a comment on the “The point of free agency” post, let me know that you think about it.

  24. By John The Draft Guy on Mar 25, 2014 | Reply


    Im a little lost. If you take CJ Mosley at ILB, whose spot does he take? I would assume Washington keeps his spot, so what I am hearing is, you are ready to give up on second round pick Minter. Why?

  25. By br on Mar 26, 2014 | Reply

    No not at all, we need depth at ILB and i have a bad feeling that DWash is going to have to sit 6-8 games, but using Cards BPA Moseley i think wpuld be the pick. I would love to see Martin/ND as the pick. If Martin not there then would like to see us trade out of first for much needed picks. Sorry for the confusion, (i confused myself there… was up most of the night and spent 7hrs in the ER with my son and his kidney stones, I apologize for the confusion, i swapped the names. Do need to get veteran depth thoug at ILB, wish they would consider Angerer from the Colts. Again, sorry for the confusion..I was a zombie due to no sleep! At my age sleep is precious! ! I dont even call it beauty rest anymore…gave up on my ugly azz yrs ago in that department!!! LOL

  26. By Coach K on Mar 26, 2014 | Reply

    There is no doubt in my mind that if Calvin Pryor is on the board at pick #20, the Cardinals are going to draft Pryor. He is clearly a little better than Bucannon and Loston.

    In round two, I am starting to think they might take an offensive right tackle. Perhaps Joel Bitonio, Jack Mewhort, or JuWuan James. All would be considered a slight reach, but all three are very solid right tackle prospects. Bitonio is the most athletic and can play guard and tackle.

    In round three, there are several really good defensive ends who can play down D-ends in the 3-4 defense. These first three rounds can be big for us if we hit on all three players.

    In rounds 4 thru 6, this is where we can get lucky if this deep draft pushes high quality players down below their draft grade. I think this is where we will find the inside backer and another cornerback for depth.

    Rookie Free Agents. I think Tom Savage the QB from Pitt will go undrafted. Also, the kid from Wyoming. So we should invite one of them to compete.

  27. By John The Draft Guy on Mar 26, 2014 | Reply

    What I perceive as cardinal needs in the draft are;

    OLB – I dont believe we have a young double digit sack guy on the roster. With Abraham at his age and in his last year of contract, It might be wise to find someone and let Acho and Okefer battle for the other spot, while Shaughnessy plays his role. – Ealy or Barr would be amazing but D Law out of Boise could be a sleeper.

    Safety- There is no doubt the cards are thin at safety. I think this has to be a day one or two priority. – Calvin Pryor has range and hits like a ton of bricks. A lot of you are high on Deone Bucannon. I am not sure. Although I compare him to Adrian Wilson, Wilson was faster and more athletic. I see him stiff and more of a guy who covers zones in short areas. I do not see him running in the seem with Vernon Davis, or covering a back like Ellington up the sideline. A name many do not bring up but played well at the senior bowl is Jimmy Ward. Much more athletic and great cover skills.
    Loston is another in the box kind of guy. He is nowhere near as good as Eric Reed as I saw suggested. Reed was a ball hawk who was good in coverage. I see Loston as a big body in the box kind of guy.
    A 3rd round guy would be Ed Reynolds out of Stanford. Big guy who can run and cover. He is a good tackler.
    I am not a fan of Ahmad Dixon. He is out of position too much.

    WR – Someone said we need a speed receiver because there is no faith in Ginn. You don’t pay a 3rd receiver 3.5 million if you dont believe in him. I think Keim and BA have plenty of faith that Ginn will give us 40 catches, 5 TDs and a big play a game. I totally agree. I do like Moncrief or Bryant in the 3rd or 4th rounds to back up Fitz.

    OL – I love Veldeer at LT and Cooper should be solid at LG, our center Sendlin is solid and I truly believe in Watford at guard. But if he doesnt come thru, we have Larson and Faniaka to fill the spot. That leaves RT. Could the cards take a tackle? that is reasonable. It depends on how they feel about Massie . I’m not sure how they view him. Do you roll the dice knowing you have Sowell to fall back on?

    ILB – I just do not think it makes sense to back up 2 young ILBs with another young rookie. I would address this after the draft to see if we can land someone on the cheap. I believe Minter and Washington will be the starters.

    QB – I think the combo of Palmer and Stanton is set. Palmer has a couple of years in him. When he steps down, I think BA drafts a QB to compete with Stanton. Just my feeling, unless someone too good to pass falls (Bortles)

    DL – Williams is in his last year, Dockett is 34 and has a huge contract, Campbell is in his prime. This is an area that needs to be addressed in the draft. Quarles is a guy who could come in and back up DD. Another guy to look at it at LSU. Anthony Johnson could play NT or DE, giving the cards a guy who could back up Williams and Dockett. Remember our other NT is out for a while. But a really nice NT would be McCullers from Tennessee. Huge 6’7″ 352 pound guy who just locks down the middle. A day 3 pick that could pay off.

  28. By John The Draft Guy on Mar 26, 2014 | Reply

    Just saw a mock draft that has Demarcus Lawrence ( D Law) going in round one ahead of Ealy. I guess he is no longer a sleeper.

    The same draft had Moncrief going #35. and Jimmy Ward in the first.

    The mocks are starting to pick up on good players without the big names.

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