Monday, September 26, 2022

Chiefs add $500K in incentives to JuJu Smith-Schuster’s contract ahead of 2022 NFL season, per report

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USATSI

When the Chiefs signed former Steelers wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster this offseason, they arguably got one of the top bargains of free agency, committing less than $2.5 million guaranteed to land the ex-Pro Bowler. Now, with training camp in the books and the 2022 season just around the corner, Kansas City has effectively given the wideout a raise, adding more than $500,000 in incentives to his one-year contract, according to ESPN.

Smith-Schuster’s original deal included per-game roster bonuses of $30K, per Over the Cap, allowing him to earn an extra $510K for playing a full 17-game season. Now, his per-game roster bonuses will be worth $60K, according to Field Yates, bringing his potential roster-bonus ceiling to $1.02M.

It’s a notable development considering the receiver has struggled to stay healthy as of late. Head and knee injuries cost the 25-year-old pass catcher five games in 2019, and he played just five games total in 2021 — his last season with the Steelers — after dislocating his shoulder. Smith-Schuster is currently recovering from a separate knee injury suffered after the Chiefs’ preseason opener, though head coach Andy Reid recently expressed optimism that the wideout will be ready for Week 1.

When healthy and at the peak of his game, Smith-Schuster has proven to be a reliable possession receiver, twice eclipsing 95 catches and posting catch percentages of at least 70. His best numbers came in 2018, when he totaled 1,426 receiving yards and seven touchdowns while starting opposite Antonio Brown in Pittsburgh. Despite his affordable salary this year, he’s expected to serve as one of Patrick Mahomes‘ top three targets after the Chiefs’ trade of Tyreek Hill to Miami.

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