Nov 7, 2016; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Tyler Lockett (16) reacts to returning a punt by the Buffalo Bills during the first half of a NFL football game at CenturyLink Field. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Breaking down the Tyler Lockett extension

The Seahawks recently extended Tyler Lockett to a three year extension worth $31.8M. As with every NFL contract, it’s important to examine the details, cash structure, incentives, and guarantees to accurately project the player’s future with the team. Here’s several go-to facts for the contract:

  • It’s a three year extension worth $31.8M, keep him in Seattle through 2021.
  • The deal increases his 2018 cap hit by $2.34M (from $2.1M to $4.4M)
  • Lockett received a $9M signing bonus
  • $11M of that $31.8M is fully guaranteed ($9M being signing bonus and $2M in 2018 base salary)
  • The deal has $22.4M of total guarantees ($11M full GTEs + 2019/2020 injury guarantees for base salary)
  • 35% of the deal is fully guaranteed at signing. Typical top 20 receivers are in the 40-50% range (and sometimes higher/lower).
  • An additional $1.2M in incentives are available for the 2019/2020 seasons
  • 2019/2020 base salaries guaranteed for injury at signing, but vest later on
  • The deal makes him the 21st highest paid receiver in terms of new money APY.

Here’s how the contract visually breaks down per Over the Cap:

Typical with many Seahawks contracts, Lockett’s 2019 & 2020 base salaries are guaranteed for injury at signing but will vest into full guarantees of the 5th day of each respective league year.

Lockett’s cap hits are as follows: 2018/$4.4M, 2019/$6.6M, 2020/$10.2M, 2021/$11.5M.

Concluding Thoughts

Overall this appears to be a very strong contract for Tyler and his agent. Considering his previous injury concerns, he secured a strong full guarantee as well as a very player friendly total guarantee. If Lockett were to experience a career ending injury tomorrow, he would see 70% of the deal he signed (the $22.4M in total guarantees). Clearly the Seahawks have high expectations for him moving forward.

There is a considerable amount of risk for the Seahawks in this contract. If Lockett fails to return to his pre-injury form or experiences another health setback, they’ll be on the hook for a good amount of dead money and will likely be forced to keep him through 2019 and maybe 2020. However, I highly doubt Seahawks doctors would sign off internally on a deal like this without being confident in his health.

On the flip side, the receiver market is exploding. OBJ just recently set the market with an $18M APY deal. If Lockett can return to form and develop into a top 10 receiver, we may be looking back on this deal as extremely favorable for Seattle.

It will sure be fun to look back on this deal in 3-4 years.