Around the NFL  


Inside Tyvon Branch's new Oakland Raiders contract


Last weekend, franchised Oakland Raiders safety Tyvon Branch agreed to a four-year contract worth $26.6 million with $17.6 million in guaranteed money. The new contract freed up $3.8 million in cap space for the Raiders, and while Branch is scheduled to earn $12,000 less than he would have under the franchise tag, he's happy to know where he'll be the next few seasons.

Around the League has gotten a look at what Branch will earn over the next four seasons and how the deal was structured.

Breer: Prison tag?
Since first coming into practice 20 years ago, the franchise tag certainly has evolved. Albert Breer investigates. More ...

According to a source with knowledge of Branch's contract, the 25-year-old received a $5.6 million signing bonus and will earn $1 million in fully guaranteed base salary. In 2013, Branch is due a $3.5 million roster bonus on the third day of the league year, which typically falls in March. Branch is due to earn $6 million in base salary next season, an amount that is currently guaranteed for injury. The amount will be fully guaranteed if Branch is on the roster on the third day of the league year.

Branch has a $1 million roster bonus due on the third day of the 2014 league year. On the same day, $1.5 million of his $3 million base salary in 2014 will become fully guaranteed. In the fourth and final year of the contract, Branch has another $1 million roster bonus (third day of the 2015 league year) and a $5.5 million base salary. An additional $1 million is available in four $250,000 incentives tied to Branch earning Pro Bowl honors.

Branch's cap numbers the next few seasons are $2.4 million (2012), $10.9 million (2013)*, $5.4 million (2014) and $7.9 million (2015).

*In looking at the Raiders' long-term cap situation, they have fewer than 50 players signed for the 2013 season. Before base-salary escalators and incentives, those players account for $130 million in salary-cap dollars. With the cap expected to remain flat, cuts and restructures are likely. There is no offset language on Branch's contract regarding his 2012 base salary, 2013 roster bonus and most (75 percent) of his 2013 base salary, which should place Branch and his $10.9 million cap number next season on the "restructure candidate" list.