Proven Performance Escalator 2015

Three players on the Houston Texans roster are due for a nice base salary raise for the 2015 season as part of the Proven Performance Escalator (PPE) built into the 2011 Collective Bargaining Agreement.  The PPE is available for players that were drafted in rounds 3 through 7, and is available based on playing time.  Undrafted players, punters, and kickers (sorry Randy Bullock) do not get to enjoy this escalator.  The escalator becomes available in the 4th year of the player’s contract and is activated based on playing time.  The player must play 35% of the offensive or defensive snaps in two of the first three years, or have a cumulative 35% of snaps played over the three year period.  This escalator was available for Brandon Brooks, Ben Jones, Keyshawn Martin, and Jared Crick.

Below are player snap counts for the past 3 seasons, via ProFootball Focus.

2012 2013 2014 Total
Jared Crick 220 277 726 1223
18.27% 26.1% 63.1% 35.3%
Ben Jones 702 234 1070 2006
53.6% 20.4% 94.5% 55.9%
Brandon Brooks 111 1063 1005 2179
8.4% 93.0% 88.7% 60.8%
Keyshawn Martin 268 385 239 892
20.4% 33.6% 21.1% 24.9%
Offensive Snaps 1309 1143 1132 3584
Defensive Snaps 1204 1060 1150 3414

Based on the player snap counts Jared Crick, Ben Jones, and Brandon Brooks will receive the PPE for 2015.

Today we do not know the exact amount of the increase in base salary pay for the players; but we have a decent idea.  The final numbers will not be determined until the salary cap is set for the 2015, expected to be around $141-143 million and to be set the first week of March.  The NFLPA has determined to use a place holder amount to set initial calculations.  For our numbers we will do the same, using the First Right of Refusal tender amount of $1,547,000 to calculate the salary increase.

The difference between the FROR tender amount and the players pay (base salary, incentives, roster bonus) excluding pro-rated signing bonus money.  Since the three players do not have any additional incentives or roster bonus money, their salary will be $1,547,000 for the 2015 season.  FROR tender ($1,574,000) minus base salary calculates the difference, then add the difference to the base salary.  This will increase the cap charges for the three players by $2.69 million; or in other words the team loses $2.69 million in cap space.

Updated Salary Cap Charges

2015 Salary PPE 2015 Salary 2015 Salary Charge
Jared Crick $660,000 $1,574,000 $1,671,875
Ben Jones $660,000 $1,574,000 $1,694,362
Brandon Brooks $702,564 $1,574,000 $1,728,359

The increase in salary is definitely worth it as all three of these players are quality starters for the Houston Texans.  Unfortunately all three players are set to become unrestricted free agents after the 2015 season; Houston has some decision to make over the next 12-15 months.

We will get the finalized numbers updated once the team salary cap is set for the 2015 season; but this is a good barometer.  We used the maximum 10% increase for the FROR tender, so the final numbers should be slightly less than this.

If you have any questions, feel free to comment below.  As always, if you see an error please let me know so that I can correct it.

Troy