New England Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman knew that the 2013 offseason gave him his best chance at snagging a significant payday, and he unsurprisingly rejected a three-year deal from the Patriots before the start of free agency and hit the open market. Although he received some interest from the San Francisco 49ers and Cleveland Browns, Edelman’s market was lukewarm even after a breakout season that saw him catch 105 passes and stay healthy for all 16 games. I’m sure most teams saw that Edelman is a WR2 and likely didn’t want to pay him as much due to the belief that Tom Brady and a lack of other consistent weapons due to injuries led to Edelman piling up receptions.
It always looked like Edelman would end up with the Patriots again, and they re-signed him to a four-year deal a few days ago. Now, we know the financial details of his contract, as FOX Sports’s Mike Garafolo reports that Edelman will make $17 million in base salary over those four seasons with an additional $2 million in incentives. $8 million of the contract is guaranteed, which is pretty significant for a player with his injury history.
Edelman’s base salary per year is pretty cheap, and it’s about in line with what most of us expected. I actually thought he would earn $5 million per year before free agency hit, but the waning interest in him ensured that he would receive $4-5 million instead. It’s a solid deal for the Patriots, and it ensures them that their most productive pass-catcher won’t leave for the second year in a row following Wes Welker’s departure in 2013.