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Sean Smith’s base deal: Three years, $16.5 million

Titans Dolphins Football

Miami Dolphins’ Sean Smith sits on the ground after missing a potential fourth-quarter interception during their NFL football game against the Tennessee Titans, Sunday, Nov. 11, 2012, in Miami. The Titans won 37-3. (AP Photo/The Miami Herald, Charles Trainor Jr) MAGS OUT


The 2013 cornerback market is worse than previously believed.

The contract signed by Sean Smith with the Chiefs widely was reported as being worth $18 million over three years, for a modest average of $6 million per year. In reality, it’s even more modest than that.

Per a source with knowledge of the contract, it has a base value of only $16.5 million, which equates to an average of $5.5 million annually.

Escalators and incentives can push the number to $18 million.

Also, only $7.465 million is fully guaranteed. The 2014 base salary of $3.45 million is guaranteed for injury only, and it becomes fully guaranteed on February 7.

So, basically, the top of the cornerback market is $5.5 million per year.