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Joe Haeg leads Colts in performance-based pay for 2016 season

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NFL: International Series-Indianapolis Colts at Jacksonville Jaguars Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Every year, the NFL awards players performance-based pay, which seeks to compensate players in addition to their normal salaries.

The idea is that the contract for each player is then compared with how much that player actually played to determine how much performance-based pay he will get. So for instance a player who played a ton on a smaller salary would receive a significant bit of performance-based pay following the season.

This year’s performance-based pay was announced today, and that means several Colts players are getting a nice paycheck in addition to their normal contracts. According to the Indianapolis Star’s Stephen Holder, here’s the top five for the Colts when it comes to performance-based pay for the 2016 season:

Joe Haeg, OL, $276,000

Edwin Jackson, LB, $211,000

David Parry, DL, $176,000

Erik Swoope, TE, $166,000

Denzelle Good, OL, $165,000

The performance-based pay system is designed to especially help guys who entered the league as undrafted free agents or as low draft picks, and that can been by the top five Colts in this category this year: Haeg was a fifth round rookie who played in 15 games and started 14 of them; Jackson was an undrafted second-year player who played in 16 games and started eight; Parry was a second-year player drafted in the fifth round who started all 16 games; Swoope was an undrafted player in his third year with the team who played in 16 games and started four; and Good was a second-year player drafted in the seventh round who played in 12 games and started ten. I think the common denominator is clear: these are guys who were unheralded entering the league (which is reflected in their contracts) who played a lot of significant snaps last year.

It’s nice to see the NFL giving players like these guys a bit more money since their play time exceeded their contract value, and that’s what the performance-based pay system is all about.