The Denver Broncos and offensive tackle Ryan Clady have beaten the clock on the deadline to sign a long-term contract well before the buzzer.
Clady has agreed to a five-year contract worth $52.5 million, with $33 million guaranteed, sources told FOX Sports. The guaranteed money comes over the first three years of the contract.
The deal includes another $5 million in incentives that pushes the maximum value as high as $57.5 million if the three-time Pro Bowl selection is selected as a Pro Bowler twice more.
The Broncos had given Clady, who is recovering from shoulder surgery, a one-year offer of $9.8 million along with the franchise tag. While other franchise players rushed to sign the tag, Clady waited. The two sides had remained far apart on proposals until late last week, when progress was made toward a deal that had both sides optimistic for the first time since the negotiations began.
A base salary of nearly $10 million this season gave Clady a good starting point to push for a contract that crossed into double digits. The Broncos gave him just that, meaning his deal beats the $8.5 million per season Jake Long received from the St. Louis Rams this offseason as the top left tackle on the market.
Clady, 26, is the first player who was given the franchise tag this offseason to sign a long-term contract, and he might be the only one to do so. Fellow left tackle Branden Albert and the Kansas City Chiefs remain far apart, as do the rest of the franchise players, including Buffalo Bills and safety Jairus Byrd. Players who received the franchise tag have until Monday to sign long-term deals or must then play under the tender offer this season.
Clady, who protects quarterback Peyton Manning’s blind side, was selected 12th overall in the 2008 NFL Draft by the Broncos.