The value of Chris Kelsay’s new contract is $20 million over four years, for an average of $5 million a year, according to figures obtained by The News. On top of that, the deal includes incentives of $4 million - $1 million in each year of the deal, 2011 to 2014. So the maximum value is $24 million. We don’t know how he would qualify for those incentives. The presumption is they’re tied to playing time, and the bar is not extremely high to achieve them. Kelsay essentially gets a $2.4 million signing bonus. That includes a $400,000 increase in his base salary this year and a $2 million bonus paid out this week. (It’s counted as an option bonus, not an amortized bonus, for students of the salary cap.) Kelsay gets a base salary of $2 million in 2011, which is guaranteed. He also gets a $2 million reporting bonus in 2011.
Bottom line: It’s a good deal for Kelsay, because he gets more financial security and more money in his pocket right away. It’s not an exorbitant deal for the Bills. Theoretically - and that's the operative term here - it really should not preclude the Bills from any future spending on renegotiations or free-agent acquisitions. Kelsay’s base salaries are $3.5 million in 2012, $3.7 million in 2013 and $3.7 million in 2014. As with any standard player contract, those aren’t guaranteed. He gets roster bonuses of $750,000 each of those three years.