Seahawks QB Russell Wilson Receives $35 Million Signing Bonus Deferment
The Seahawks don't have a scheduled regular season game until September and the season may not start on time due to COVID-19. But that development didn't stop Russell Wilson from receiving a huge offseason pay day.
Seattle's All-Pro quarterback received $35 million in deferred money on Wednesday, which was left over from his signing bonus as part of the massive four-year, $140 million extension he signed last April.
Immediately after striking the record-setting deal, Wilson received $30 million of the signing bonus last season. The deal in terms of average yearly value is the richest contract in NFL history.
The Super Bowl-winning quarterback certainly earned his keep last season as posted arguably the best numbers of his NFL career. The eighth-year veteran completed 66.1 percent of his passes for 4,110 yards and 31 touchdowns with a 106.3 passer rating, according to pro-football-reference.com.
During the first half of the season, Wilson was a front-runner for MVP honors, but Ravens standout Lamar Jackson eventually surpassed him. He would later be named the first-ever unanimous MVP in just his second season in the league.
Wilson's play on the field certainly warranted him the big contract extension he received last spring. However, it has presented a challenge for Seahawks general manager John Schneider to put a Super Bowl contending product on the field. Due a fully-guaranteed $18 million base salary in 2020, the six-time Pro Bowler accounts for 15.6 percent of the Seahawks salary cap for the upcoming season.
"It's awesome because you've got your quarterback. But then on the other hand, you've got to balance the rest of the roster right?" Schneider said at the NFL Scouting Combine. "So that's just a natural - it's a process for us. And you have to figure out, we have to make tough decisions every year, and so you have to decide.... But you have to navigate through that and how you're gonna balance your team."
Along with Wilson, ESPN's Field Yates also reported a couple of other Seahawks were due signing bonuses, including linebacker Bobby Wagner, who is owed $8 million of deferred money from his $15 million signing bonus after agreeing to a three-year, $15 million extension prior to the 2019 season.