It pays to play at a high level in the NFL.
Not only are Eddie Jackson and Cody Whitehair in line for lucrative contract extensions in the near future, but they earned an automatic bump in pay on their current contracts based on their performances in 2018.
Every player in the NFL is eligible to receive these bonuses based on their playing time compared to their salary, and the young safety and center were the biggest earners on the Bears roster this year.
Top Bears performance-based pay bonuses for 2018:— Kevin Fishbain (@kfishbain) March 14, 2019
A Miller $154,905
Jackson nearly doubled his salary for 2018, which was set with a base of just $555,000 as a fourth-round pick.
Nearly all of the Bears young contributors earned a bonus of some degree, along with veteran guard Bryan Witzmann, who started seven games on a minimum-salary contract of $630,000.
These bonuses don’t even count against the salary cap, so it’s just an added reward for inexpensive players who provide great value.
These types of players have been critical to Ryan Pace’s team-building strategy, allowing him to pursue top free agents and trade targets like Allen Robinson and Khalil Mack.