Skip navigation
Sign up to follow your favorites on all your devices.
Sign up

NFL’s performance-based pay program rises by $1 million per team in 2024

Star free agents are the players who have the most to celebrate with today’s news of a massive increase in the NFL salary cap to $255.4 million for the 2024 season. But the lower-paid players at the bottom of the salary structure have plenty to celebrate, too.

The NFL and NFL Players Association have negotiated an increase in the league’s performance-based pay program of $1 million per team, according to Tom Pelissero of NFL Network. That means each NFL team will pay out $14.147 million in performance-based pay this season.

The league’s performance-based pay program gives bonuses to players based on playing time and their regular pay, with lower-paid players who get a lot of playing time receiving the biggest bonuses. Performance-based pay has not yet been announced for the 2023 season, but for the 2022 season the player who received the biggest bonus was Marcus Epps, who earned a performance-based pay bonus of $880,384 on top of his base salary of $965,000.

The formula that determines performance-based pay considers two things: The player’s salary for the previous season, and how many plays he played in the previous season. Every single player who plays even one snap gets a performance-based pay bonus, but for many players (those with high salaries who don’t play a lot of snaps), that bonus is minuscule. For some players, however, (those with low salaries who play a lot of snaps), the bonus is significant.

Those bonuses will now grow bigger, by a total of $32 million across the NFL.