Over the last few days, “Shutdown Corner” has reported on some of the base salary increases for the 2013 season. In the first report last Saturday, which was updated on Monday, the highest increase belong to Cleveland Browns quarterback Colt McCoy, whose performances during his first two seasons in the NFL added $1.75 million to his 2013 base salary. Move over, Colt. According to NFLPA records, Houston Texans wide receiver Andre Johnson triggered a $3.3 million escalator in his contract and is now scheduled to earn $9.5 million in base salary in 2013. Johnson, who turns 32 in July, caught 112 passes for 1,598 yards – both numbers ranked in the Top 5 in the NFL – with four touchdowns in 2012 and was named to the Pro Bowl for the sixth time in his career. In addition to Johnson, Green Bay Packers outside linebacker Clay Matthews will be on the receiving end of a hefty pay raise in 2013. The 2009 first-round pick out of USC was originally scheduled to earn $805,000 in 2013, the final season in Matthews’ five-year rookie contract that had a maximum value of $13.275 million. Matthews could have increased his 2013 salary by up to $3.1 million based on his playing-time and nearly reached the maximum amount of salary escalation. Matthews is now slated to make $3.73 million in 2013, coming up $175,000 short after failing to achieve 85 percent playing-time in two of his four seasons in the NFL (2009, 2012). Also receiving a base salary escalator in excess of $2 million is San Francisco 49ers cornerback Tarell Brown, a 2007 fifth-round pick out of Texas who was a nickel corner when he signed a three-year extension with a base value of $8.2 million midway through the 2009 season. Brown has become a full-time starter for the 49ers and his 2013 base salary, originally scheduled to be $925,000, has increased by $2 million to $2.925 million. To beef up their secondary last offseason, the Arizona Cardinals signed cornerback William Gay to a two-year, $3.2 million contract that could have increased to over $5 million in value based on Gay’s playing time in 2012. According to official playing-time documents, Gay played 1,005 of the Cardinals’ 1,080 defensive snaps, triggering a $1.75 million escalator to his 2013 base salary, which now stands at $3.225 million. Another cornerback earning a seven-figure pay raise is Tim Jennings of the Chicago Bears. Re-signed to a two-year, $6.6 million by the Bears last March, Jennings earned Pro Bowl honors for the first time in his career after leading the NFL with nine interceptions. Jennings’ playing-time percentage (84.3 percent) triggered a $1 million escalator in his contract, boosting his 2013 base salary to $4.25 million.
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Texans wide receiver Andre Johnson earns big raise in 2013 (Shutdown Corner)