Cooper Scores With League’s Performance Bonus

Part of the labor agreement between NFL owners and the players is a performance-based bonus that’s intended to provide extra compensation for players that outperformed their contract.

Essentially it’s a way to reward late-round draft choices, undrafted rookies and street free agents that received more playing time than expected when they signed their contracts. Most of those deals were for the league minimum. The bonus is not based on production numbers like rushing yards or tackles. Instead, it’s based on how much playing time a player saw during the season.

There’s $110.72 million in the performance pool for the 2013 season, or $3.46 million per team. From last year’s Chiefs there were 61 players that received bonus money topped by rookie cornerback Marcus Cooper. When the league pays out these bonuses in April 2016, Cooper will receive $253,737. That ranked him at No. 15 among all the league players. Offensive tackle Jordan Mills of the Chicago Bears had the biggest bonus at $318,244.

Last season Cooper earned $405,000 in base salary with the Chiefs after he was claimed off the waiver wire from San Francisco the week before regular season game No. 1. According to NFL reckoning, he appeared in nearly 54 percent of the team’s plays in the 2013 regular season.

Second on the Chiefs was safety Quintin Demps $193,181 after he received a base salary last season of $556,050. The No. 3 spot was another of the waiver-claim group, tight end Sean McGrath who picked up a bonus of $185,734.

The bonus totals reach all the way down to rookie tight end Travis Kelce. He spent most of the season on the injured-reserve list and was awarded a $209 bonus.

Here is a list of the top 10 Chiefs and their performance bonus payments:









How acquired    

Marcus Cooper




Claimed off waiver wire – 2013
Quintin Demps




Signed as street free agent – 2013
Sean McGrath




Claimed off waiver wire – 2013
Junior Hemingway




Drafted 7th-2012
Akeem Jordan




Signed as street free agent – 2013
Anthony Sherman




Trade from Arizona – 2013
Husain Abdullah




Signed as street free agent – 2013
Rodney Hudson




Drafted 2nd-2011
Frank Zombo




Signed as UFA – 2013
Justin Houston




Drafted 3rd-2011

Here are other performance bonuses handed out to members of the 2013 Chiefs: OT Branden Albert $10,240; G Jeff Allen $109,907; G Jon Asamoah $56,462; WR Donnie Avery $47,740; DE Allen Bailey $88,313; SS Eric Berry $11,956; WR Dwayne Bowe $25,469; DE Mike Catapano $63,311; RB Jamaal Charles $213,735; P Dustin Colquitt $11,563; S Sanders Commings $12,224; QB Chase Daniel $6,762; RB Knile Davis $45,801; DE Mike DeVito $24,960; OT Eric Fisher $25,643; CB Brandon Flowers $15,714; LS Thomas Gafford $36,623; RB Cyrus Gray $93,100; OLB Tamba Hali $7,540; WR Chad Hall $14,036; NT Jaye Howard $13,178; DE Tyson Jackson $9,183; WR A.J. Jenkins $39,320; ILB Derrick Johnson $36,385; ILB James-Michael Johnson $97,223; ILB Nico Johnson $19,042; G Rishaw Johnson $20,540; TE Dominique Jones $10,904; TE Travis Kelce $209; C Eric Kush $21,761; FS Kendrick Lewis $90,283; OLB Josh Martin $52,918; WR Dexter McCluster $58,113; OLB Dezman Moses $71,363; CB Ron Parker $102,579; NT Dontari Poe $47,729; CB Dunta Robinson $12,166; G Geoff Schwartz $84,256; QB Alex Smith $13,218; CB Sean Smith $40,182; OT Donald Stephenson $112,123; K Ryan Succop $14,288; G Rokevious Watkins $26,302.

4 Responses to “Cooper Scores With League’s Performance Bonus”

  • March 25, 2014  - Johnfromwichita says:

    Wait. What?

    Fifteen years I’ve driven 400 miles back and forth. Every game. Missed one.

    Sat in heat, cold, rain, snow. Once my first two beers froze before I could drink them.

    Friends laughed at me.

    I paid to watch some really uninspired football. Yet I never left with a voice.

    Times, I think, I tried harder than they did.

    And, yet, I get no bonus? I don’t get a free anything? I, WTF, pay to park? And told when to leave?

    Lewis got $90,238. That’s just not right. Hell, if I really have to go to the bathroom bad, I can move faster than he can.

    Maybe fans need a union.

  • March 26, 2014  - ChuckXX says:

    John; How about this one- Sanders Commings never sees the field and gets a $12,224 bonus.

  • March 26, 2014  - matt says:

    wow, so its based on playing time, We paid Commings a bonus for NOT playing. geez

  • March 26, 2014  - el cid says:

    Fans are fans and do not consider money in the equation. Sort of sad, as I can account for thousands on mediocre football over the years. Could have bought a good pontoon boat and slip on a large lake with cash for gas left over or a new golf cart and membership for years yet to come.

    As for Commings, if he can play, do not care, if not, someone will comment on my lack of good will.

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