How much are three snaps and 24 yards worth? For a couple of Patriots players, several hundred thousand dollars.
Per NFL Players Association records, the Patriots have adjusted the contracts of running back James White and defensive tackle Lawrence Guy, awarding them incentive bonuses that they barely missed in 2018.
White, who led the Patriots with 1,176 total yards last year, came up 24 yards short of a $250,000 bonus for 1,200 yards. And Guy, who played in 518 of 1,042 (49.7 percent) of the Patriots’ defensive snaps last year, fell three snaps short of a $400,000 bonus for 50 percent of snaps.
But the Patriots did right by their players and paid them anyway. NFL rules prohibit the Patriots from simply paying the incentive bonus, so instead they renegotiated White’s contract to add a $250,000 signing bonus to this year, and Guy’s contract to add a $400,000 signing bonus.
The Patriots are tight on the salary cap, with about $5 million in cap space, and the moves increased White’s salary cap number by $125,000 and Guy’s by $200,000.
For Guy, this marks the second straight year that the Patriots did him a solid. In 2017, Guy missed out by one snap on a $500,000 bonus for playing 55 percent of snaps, but the Patriots still paid him the bonus in 2018.
White, meanwhile, earned $750,000 in incentives last year, on top of his $1.5 million salary. He got $250,000 each for reaching 50 percent of snaps (53.6 percent), 1,000 total yards, and 1,200 total yards. He missed out on his other incentive, $250,000 for 60 percent of snaps.