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Nick Mangold vs Ryan Kalil
New York Jets Salary Cap Page

Nick Mangold vs Ryan Kalil

I said I would get back to Jets stuff shortly so I thought I would revisit the Nick Mangold contract in light of the Carolina Panthers C Ryan Kalil signing a new 6 year contract worth a reported $49 million. Kalil is now being touted as the highest paid center in the NFL, which he probably is assuming the leaked details are correct, and I thought this might be a good time to see just how the NFL seems to value contracts and how that is often misconstrued when the numbers are reported.

Last season Mangold signed a 7 year extension worth $54.1 million with about $22 million in guaranteed money. The total contract, though, was set to run 8 years at a total of $57.6 million, which took into account Mangoldís valid 2010 contract that was set to pay him an unguaranteed $3.5 million. The annual per year for Nickís extension is just under $7.73 million per season with a guarantee of about $3.1 million per season.

Like Mangold, Kalil was already under contract to the Panthers for 2011. He was the teams franchise player and set to earn a salary of $10,116,000, fully guaranteed for skill, injury, and salary cap considerations. So when we put the two contracts in perspective you have to look at the new money coming in Kalilís deal rather than the overall total. Kalilís extension will actually be a 5 year contract for about $38.9 million with a guarantee of $17.9 million. That should be the negotiated money as the $10.1 million was already accounted for by both sides.

So while this deal will still make Kalil the highest paid center in the NFL, the actual numbers, if the reports are correct, should be $7.78 million per year and a $3.6 million per year guarantee. Those numbers are much more in line with Mangoldís deal and it would not be surprising when the actual numbers are released that the APY on both deals is identical.

The other interesting thing to look at is the timing of the payments which really determines the true value of the contract. Mangold is set to earn $24.8 million in new money over the first three years of his extension. Kalil, according to reports, will earn $20.65 million in new money in the first two extension years and may or may not surpass Mangold in this regard. If he does it will not be by much since there is only $18.25 million for the Panthers to spread over the final three years of the contract.

What that brings us to is the actual five year extension value. When I reviewed the Mangold contract last August I noted how it was a good deal for both sides. The Jets got Mangold at a pretty affordable price, but the deal was structured in a manner that would see Mangold protected by large amounts of dead money at the back end of the contract. Assuming the Jets pick up all the prorated bonus money, which is more or less a foregone conclusion, Mangold will carry a dead money charge of $6.1 million in the fifth year of his extension. That makes it a certainty that Mangold will earn every penny of those 5 years. Those 5 years total $36.4 million in new money earned by Nick.

Kalil will likely be a different case. The new CBA limits the years on prorated money to 5 from 6 under the previous CBA. The Panthers have not been staggering bonuses past the first year of the contract, so it likely means that Kilal will only receive one prorated bonus which will be accounted for in 2011. Kalilís dead money count in the final year of his contract is going to be $0, making that final year nothing more than a dummy year with no chance of being earned. How much that is we wonít know for another few days, but itís probably around $8 million.

This also shows us the importance of locking up your own key players sooner rather than later. Kalil is an excellent player, but it is hard to compare him to Mangold. Mangold is a 3 time pro bowler and 2 time All Pro. He is universally considered the best center in the NFL. Like Kalil, Mangold would have been franchised and that figure would have been included in Mangoldís negotiations. Had the Jets waited until the end of the year to sign him the market would have been set based on Kalilís deal. Once that happens the $7.73 million Mangold extension is probably going to be around $8.3 million per year and in a much less cap friendly structure than it is now.

So if anyone is somehow worried that this new deal is going to upset Mangold in any way donít be too worried. Beyond the fact that Mangold is the consummate pro and never publicly griped about his deal, the fact is Mangoldís deal is set to stand the test of time while the Kalil deal will probably vanish from the books long before Mangoldís does, setting Mangold up to surpass whatever Kalil gets the next time around.

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