This is from Profootballtalk...
The contract signed by defensive tackle Corey Simon with the Colts is, upon careful inspection, not nearly as great as reported.
The issue is the $13 million in bonus money, which has been characterized in some circles as a "signing" bonus and as "guaranteed" money.
The only presently guaranteed money for Simon is his $5 million signing bonus, which is $134,000 less than the guarantee he would have gotten if he'd signed his one-year franchise tender with the Eagles.
His $540,000 salary, of course, will be guaranteed as of Week One of the regular season, since he's a vested veteran. So his net gain by not signing the tender is only $406,000.
And beyond 2005, nothing is guaranteed.
If the Colts walk away before paying the $8 million option bonus, Simon will be on the market, without restriction. Thus, he's got no more long-term security in Indy than he would have had by playing under the one-year franchise tender.
If, in turn, Simon has a monster year and the Colts pay the option bonus, Simon picks up an $8 million option bonus. And that's the same thing as playing under the one-year franchise tender and signing a free-agent contract in 2006 with an $8 million signing bonus.
And an $8 million signing bonus following a monster year for a high-end defensive tackle would be well below the market rate.
So why not take the tender for 2005 and hit the market in 2006, when he would have gotten bonus money well in excess of $8 million?
The only risk arising from taking the tender and waiting a year would have been that the player could suffer an injury that won't make him attractive to teams in 2006. But given the deal signed by Simon with the Colts, he has assumed that same risk.
That's why we firmly believe that Simon's agent, Roosevelt Barnes, would have instructed Simon to sign the Eagles' tender by the Tuesday, September 6 deadline, report to the team, collect his $5.13 million this year, and hit the market in 2006.
Sure, the Eagles might have slapped him with the tag again. But his tender in 2006 would have moved to $6.156 million. So he could have taken the one-year deal and waited again.
In the past, Barnes played this game to perfection with the Seahawks and left tackle Walter Jones. Jones pocketed three years of big-money franchise tenders before signing a long-term deal.
And the Eagles were smart enough to see it coming with Simon. Sure, they lost the player by removing the tag, but Simon is in no better position now than he would have been if he'd just signed the tender.