The price of success? $6 million for Redskins Player payroll goes from $25M to $31M

December 24, 1992|By Vito Stellino | Vito Stellino,Staff Writer

ASHBURN, Va. -- In the wake of the Washington Redskins' Super Bowl victory last January, the team's player payroll increased at least $6 million this year, according to a confidential salary survey conducted by the NFL Players Association.

The Redskins' payroll jumped from $25.3 million in 1991 to $31.4 million this year, according to the survey, with quarterback Mark Rypien getting the biggest individual increase from $1.25 million to $3 million.

It's probably not a coincidence that the four highest-paid players on the team -- Rypien, cornerback Darrell Green, rookie Desmond Howard and offensive lineman Jim Lachey -- are the four players who held out in training camp.

Green came in second at an average of $1.5 million while Howard was third at $1,475,000 and Lachey fourth at $1,350,000.

Howard got a signing bonus of $2.85 million plus $37,500 as a roster bonus for a total of $2,887,500 in up-front money. The veterans don't get signing bonuses, according to Redskins policy.

Rypien's contract is tied for fifth in the league with Boomer Esiason of Cincinnati. Dan Marino of Miami is tops at $4.43 million, followed by Warren Moon of Houston ($3.5), Joe Montana of San Francisco ($3.25) and Randall Cunningham of Philadelphia ($3.1 million). The Redskins' average salary jumped $536,661 from last year's figure of $437,026. This year, the league-wide average is $496,000.

Despite the Redskins' salary increase, they remained sixth in the league in total payroll. The 49ers remained on top with a jump from $30.1 million to $34.3 million. The Dolphins ($33.9), Colts ($32.4), Falcons ($31.6) and Giants ($31.5) also were ahead of the Redskins.

The Colts' payroll reflects the $2.291 million contract given to the top pick, lineman Steve Emtman, and the $2.189 million contract that the second pick, linebacker Quentin Coryatt, received. They're the two highest-paid defensive players in the league. Cornelius Bennett of Buffalo is the highest-paid defensive veteran at $2 million.

Although the Redskins rank sixth in the NFLPA survey, they're probably higher in actual dollars paid because the figures don't include incentive bonuses. Redskins contracts traditionally are loaded with incentive clauses.

Since the NFL Management Council stopped sending copies of the contracts during the labor war, the NFLPA has to rely on agents and players for salary information and the survey is missing some contracts.

They include offensive linemen Joe Jacoby, who's believed to be making more than $1 million, and Jeff Bostic, who got $515,000 last year, and quarterback Cary Conklin, who is believed to have gotten a new deal for about $500,000.

The survey also lists the contract of defensive lineman Charles Mann as expiring this year, which would make him eligible for free agency. But team sources say he has a new deal.

If the new deal between the players and owners is finalized, the NFLPA will start getting contracts again next year. The salary information will be a part of the contract because the league will have to monitor spending to make sure teams don't exceed the salary cap that will be triggered once teams hit 67 percent of designated gross revenues.

Even if Mann has a new deal, the Redskins will have 30 veterans, according to the survey, who don't have 1993 contracts. They include Wilber Marshall, Gary Clark, Brad Edwards and Art Monk. The five-year veterans who aren't among the three who'll be protected will be eligible for free agency.

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