2020 NFL CBA Explained: Roster Bonus

Compensation earned by remaining on a team’s roster on a certain date. Roster bonuses count in full against the salary cap in the season in which they are earned, unless fully guaranteed at signing. They are used to avoid signing-bonus proration, which pushes dead money into the future.

For example, the Rams running back Todd Gurley will receive a $7.55 million roster bonus this season, which became fully guaranteed on March 15, 2019.

However, they released the All-Pro running back before a a 2021 roster bonus–worth $5 million–became fully guaranteed on March 20, 2020. His non-guaranteed $5.5 million 2020 base salary also also would have become fully guaranteed on that date.

Largest roster bonus in 2020: Jared Goff ($21.0 million with the Rams).

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