The Eagles better have an improved offensive line next year. They’ll sure be spending a lot of money on it.
Four-year veteran offensive lineman Brandon Brooks signed a five-year deal with the Eagles on Wednesday that averages $8 million per year, which means he's one of three offensive linemen among the Eagles' seven highest-paid players and one of four offensive linemen among their 13 highest-paid players.
Right tackle Lane Johnson ($11.25 million per year) and left tackle Jason Peters ($9.825 million per year) are the second- and third-highest-paid Eagles, Brooks is seventh and center Jason Kelce is 13th.
According to Spotrac, a web site that tracks salary cap information for all four major sports, along with soccer, tennis and NASCAR, the Eagles currently have 22.5 percent of their 2016 adjusted cap figure of $161.8 million devoted to offensive linemen — fourth-highest percentage in the NFL.
Brooks, a three-year starter with the Texans, pocketed an $11 million signing bonus, the largest the Eagles have ever given an offensive lineman. Johnson got a $10 million signing bonus when the Eagles signed him in January.
Brooks is expected to move immediately into the Eagles’ starting lineup at either left guard or right guard.
Once again, Eagles vice president of football operations Howie Roseman has designed a long-term, multi-million-dollar contract that is cap-friendly in 2016, when the Eagles are in the midst of a tight salary cap squeeze.
Total value of the Brooks deal is $40 million, but he has just a $1 million base salary in 2016. His $11 million signing bonus pro-rates to $2.2 million per year over five years, which gives him a modest $3.2 million cap hit this year.
From there, Brooks’ base salaries go up to $5 million in 2017, $8.5 million in 2018, $7.5 million in 2019 and $7 million in 2020.
That creates cap figures of $7.2 million in 2017, $9.7 million in 2018, $9.7 million in 2019 and $9.2 million in 2020.
Brooks’ base salaries are fully guaranteed in 2016 and 2017. Of his 2018 base salary, $4 million is currently guaranteed only against injury but converts to guaranteed against skill/cap if he’s on the roster on the fifth day of the 2018 league year.
The contract also has Pro Bowl escalators that increase each remaining base salary.
If Brooks makes the 2016 Pro Bowl, each future base salary increases $250,000 ($1 million). If he makes the 2017 Pro Bowl, the remaining base salaries in each of his three remaining seasons increase $500,000 ($1.5 million). If he makes the 2018 Pro Bowl, the final two years increase by $750,000 (another $1.5 million). And if he makes the 2019 Pro Bowl, his final base salary would increase $1 million.
So in theory, if Brooks — who has never made a Pro Bowl — makes the Pro Bowl every year from 2016 through 2019, he’ll earn an extra $5 million.
The Eagles on Wednesday also signed Ron Brooks, a cornerback by trade who has played mainly on special teams in his four NFL seasons with the Bills.
Ron Brooks’ contract is a three-year deal worth $5.5 million, including base salaries of $800,000 in 2016, $1.85 million in 2017 and $2.15 million in 2018.
Brooks received a modest $750,000 million signing bonus, which pro-rates to $250,000 per year, creating cap figures of $1.05 million, $2.1 million and $2.4 million.
His 2016 base salary of $800,000 is fully guaranteed, which means a total of $1.55 million is guaranteed.
The deal also includes a series of incentives and escalators based on playing time that could increase his salary a total of $3.1 million.
With DeMarco Murray and Byron Maxwell gone, here’s a look at the 15 highest-paid players on the Eagles’ roster in terms of average annual salary:
$17,750,000 — Sam Bradford
$11,250,000 — Lane Johnson
$ 9,825,000 — Jason Peters
$ 9,250,000 — Vinny Curry
$ 8,500,000 — Zach Ertz
$ 8,100,000 — Malcolm Jenkins
$ 8,000,000 — Brandon Brooks
$ 7,787,500 — Connor Barwin
$ 7,250,000 — Mychal Kendricks
$ 7,000,000 — Chase Daniel
$ 7,000,000 — Rodney McLeod
$ 6,500,000 — Brandon Graham
$ 6,277,833 — Jason Kelce
$ 4,500,000 — Mark Sanchez
$ 4,000,000 — Brent Celek