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Arizona Cardinals’ WR Larry Fitzgerald Restructures His Contract

February 6th, 2014 at 5:02 AM
By Steve Smith

'The master #11 Larry Fitzgerald and his students' photo (c) 2012, Broderick Delaney - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/
Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald has restructured his contract to clear up more cap space for his team.

The eight-time Pro Bowler signed the revised contract, which apparently relieved the Red Birds from the $18 million cap hit Arizona was slated to take this year.

According to multiple reports and espn.com, Fitzgerald's base salary was reduced to $1 million and he received an $11.75 million signing bonus. That lowered his cap hit to $8.6 million for 2014, but, at the same time, increased his annual cap hit by $2.35 million each season. The University of Pittsburgh product is slated to receive an $8 million roster bonus in 2015.

In addition, the $120 million contract he signed in 2011 is set to expire in 2018. However, the final two years are options.

Fitzgerald was scheduled to make $12.75 million base salary in 2014 with the $18 million cap. In 2015, an $8 million base salary was in addition to an $8 million roster bonus and a $21.25 million cap hit.

Looking further at the numbers, for the 2016 NFL season, the 10-year veteran was scheduled to make a $15 million base salary with an $18.25 million cap number.

Finally in 2017, the final year of his $120 million contract, Fitzgerald was expected to earn $14.75 million base, which came with a $15 million cap hit.

The bottom line is that Fitzgerald is trying to help the Red Birds stay competitive in the very rugged NFC West with these moves.

It could help the Cardinals free up enough money to help sign free agent linebacker Karlos Dansby, for example. Dansby was Arizona's best defensive player in 2013 and one of the leaders of the team.

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Tags: Arizona, Arizona Cardinals, Football, Karlos Dansby, Larry Fitzgerald, NFL

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