With trade rumors and the NFL Combine in full swing, it would be easy to overlook Tom Brady's contract extension with the Patriots that will keep him in New England through the 2017 season.
Peter King of SI.com reports that the extension, which will go a long way towards making sure Brady retires with the Patriots, is below the fair market value for one of the league's top quarterbacks. The goal for Tom Brady in accepting such terms is simple. He wants to win championships, and the only way to do that is to keep the Patriots strong. By taking less money, he's essentially giving the Patriots money to spend elsewhere.
The extension saves the Patriots $15 million in cap space over the 2013, 2014 seasons. Brady's base salary in 2015 will be just $7 million. From there it increases to $8 million in 2016 and $9 million in 2017.
SI.com has come up with Brady's salary cap impact over the next several years. Here's how that breaks down now that his extension is a done deal.
2013: $13.8 million
2014: $14.8 million
2015: $13 million
2016: $14 million
2017: $15 million
It's hard to tell if a guy as fiery as Tom Brady will retire at the conclusion of his extension, but this deal insures that he'll be playing until he hits the 40 year old mark, something he's said was his goal.