Browns Will Retain C Alex Mack After Deciding To Match Jaguars Offer Sheet

Center Alex Mack is staying in the AFC North as the Cleveland Browns have decided to match the offer sheet that he signed with the Jacksonville Jaguars.

The Browns wasted no time in showing how much they wanted to retain Mack as the center reportedly just signed the five-year, $42 million offer sheet with the Jaguars on Friday.

Now that the Browns have decided to match the offer sheet, they will have to honor the terms of it and that includes them paying Mack $26 million guaranteed. In addition, Mack can void the contract after the first two seasons and he can’t be tagged again when the contract expires.

Instead of placing the franchise tag on Mack prior to the start of the free agency signing period, the Browns chose to place the $10.03 million transition tag on him instead. Had they decided not to match the offer given him by the Jaguars, they wouldn’t have received any compensation for losing him.

Mack, who was drafted by the Browns in the first round of the 2009 NFL Draft, hasn’t missed a start in 80 career games. He’s also a two-time Pro Bowler.

  • Bill Sechrengost

    What else could the Browns do? They really had no choice. So the question is now is Maurkice Pouncey worth this type of money? I know we’re all waiting to see how his knee is, but he is a young guy and we can assume he will be back the way he was before. I think the answer to that is yes, he is worth that. Now we’ll see if the Steelers think so. I know they don’t have to do anything before the season, but I’m sure the price will only go if they wait until next year.

  • falconsaftey43

    I find this stuff fascinating, but how can it be legal for his contract to have a no tag clause? That seems like a dangerous precedence to set.

  • steeltown

    There you go Browns… good for you… {pat on head}

  • Kevin Gobleck

    So could he technically void the contract right away then go back the the Jags? Not sure how that stuff works

  • steeltown

    Its the no trade provision and the fact that Mack himself can void the contract after 2yrs that seems odd.

    Bryan: How often do deals occur were players have the option to void?? It’s not something I’ve seen often.

  • Matt Manzo

    So he can void it after two years and STILL get the 26 mil? F-n Browns!

  • Louis Goetz

    According to what’s being reported elsewhere, Mack is getting $10M this year and $8M next year. After that, he can void the contract if he wants. If not, he continues making $8M a year for the remaining 3 years. The Browns have guaranteed the first 3 years of the deal, so if they cut him any time between tomorrow and the end of the 2016 campaign, he’ll still get unpaid the balance of the $26M. Other than that, the Browns (a) can’t trade him (without his consent); and (b) can never franchise tag him again. Good for Mack. I know I was hoping the Steelers got him when Cleveland did. That said, no center is worth $10,000,000.00. If I had to take Alex Mack for $10,000,000.00 or Cody Wallace for $570K, I’d take Wallace and use the money to address 5 -10 other positions. The difference between the two players simply isn’t worth $9.5M.

  • pat

    I can see Pouncey wanting a deal like this next yr if this season plays out well for him. If so I hope we let him go.

  • Kevin Gobleck

    Oops my bad i thought it said before 2 years not after

  • pittsburghjoe

    No…Pouncey is not worth the money. I would take Mack all day long over Pouncey. However, neither is worth that kind of money. I just would not sink that kind of money into a center..unless he was future HOF. Sink the money into higher impact positions.

  • pittsburghjoe

    Yup…exactly… take Wallace and spend the money somewhere else.

  • pittsburghjoe

    Let him want all day long. Just dont give him the money.

  • shawn

    ur right they are both good players but neither is worth anywhere near that money … i mean seriously does anybody think they are getting 5 times the production from a pouncey or mack then say a velasco or wallace … better yes course … but NO WAY that much better to be worth that price tag !

  • shawn

    well put !

  • Weiss Chad

    I concur.i thought steelers were gonna draft Mack the year before pounced.too much money for a center IMO.ill take a lesser value w someone like velasc

  • PoKey21

    Im positive Pouncey will be asking for something similar next year. It might be wise to try to get a deal done now given the circumstances. His value wont be lower but it’s also riskier, and that’s if he’s even willing to deal atm. I can’t see him having much loyalty to Pittsburgh. I wouldnt mind seeing the Steelrs work a deal in this draft with someone like Miami who is in need of linemen. I know it’s dreaming, but it could prove to be a shrewd move come a year from now.

  • Michael Pearce

    You can bet that Pouncey will be asking for $50 mil over 5 years now. I dont think he is worth that much and would much rather keep Velasco and Wallace over him for that price. There’s no way we can resign Ben and Pouncey at those numbers.

  • Brandon James

    Not technically, the first two years are 18 Million guaranteed. The last 8 Million is only guaranteed if he takes the 3rd year player option.

  • Brandon James

    Steelers will not pay their center 10million a year. Quote me. Especially with munchak who can coach up any center of his liking.

  • CW

    The average of the top three centers prior to this contract was around 7 to 8 million per year, if memory serves. Which makes the yearly payout on Alex Mack close to 1.5 times the going rate per year which is foolish for a team with as many good players who were early round draft picks as the Browns have.

    Mack wanted out bad and the Jags in their terrible situation were willing to pay a high premium for a key rebuilding piece. The Browns were no where near as bad off if they let Mack go. However you have to now wonder whether the Browns management will come to regret this decision seeing as now a lot of other Browns Pro Bowl players will probably start expecting about 1.5 times the going rate to stay in Cleveland.

  • treeher

    No. He’s been ok, but can’t stay on the field and has been tagged as one of the most overrated players.

  • SfSteeler

    this is a HUMUNGALOID decision to make, because we need to re-sign Worilds, Hayward, and Cortez before the year starts AND before they play there expected MAJOR roles in 14′ and blow-out the bank…

    i really think Pouncey is the odd man out cash wize, given the two quality guards around him and the Cody Wallace new 3 year contract…

    one bid nasty hard decisions, but the D makes this team tick and the three discussed above must be signed now, not later…

  • treeher

    Mack hasn’t sat in 80 games, his entire career. That alone puts Pouncey in the back seat.

  • treeher

    He’s worth about 1/2 of that.

  • DoctorNoah

    Terrible management by Browns front office in even letting him get that far. Only things Browns could do to be sh*ttier is ask Dan Snyder to buy the team and give money to establish a fund for those bowel movements who feel that the name “Browns” is personally offensive.

  • Dupree

    5 year 42 mil.

    Thats around 8.25 mil a year man. Which is the top… but certainly not 50% more.

  • Matt Manzo

    So it’s 26mil for 3 years plus the 3rd year salary? Or the 3rd year is included in the 26 mil?

  • CW

    There’s a two year escape clause that ratchets up the yearly cost significantly because it’s the player that holds the right and therefore leaves the team on the hook for all the guaranteed money if he exercises that clause. Add in the front loaded nature of the contract where more than half the contract is paid out in the first two years and it is about 1.5 times the normal payout for a center over those first two years which are the only years the Browns can be sure to have Alex Mack.

    If Mack stays for the five years then the cost drops to 8.25, but until year three the Browns have put themselves in a terrible situation where they are way over paying for a center that could be gone in 2016.

  • Dupree

    Its a 2 year 18 mil contract (10 mil year one 8 mil year 2), followed by a 3 year 24 mil option

    So its first 2 years is 9 mil, final 3 are 8, its still not THAT much more

  • CW


    It’s 26 million guaranteed regardless of the length of contract. That means it’s quite a bit north of 18 million for the first two years.

    That’s 7.6 million in non guaranteed salary for the first two years and 26 million for the contract guaranteed regardless of the length of contract.

    That means if he leaves after two years the Browns will have paid him effectively $16.8 million per season with the Browns.

    Which is quite a bit more than 9 million per season.

  • Brandon James

    So the first two years are 9 Mil each and he has to play. The 3rd year comes and he has received 18mil. The last 8 mil is ONLY guaranteed if he says “I Will play the 3rd year in Cleveland”

    At least those were the ways the Jags presented it.

  • Dupree

    The 26 million is his salary.

    the 2 year 18 million is fully guaranteed, the 3rd year is an option for 8 mil, that if the player takes it, is worth 8 mil.

    18+8 mil = 26 mil that the guaranteed money

    You don’t add the guaranteed money to the salary, because in this case it IS the salary

  • CW

    You really don’t get it.

    All guaranteed money is paid out up front after the contract becomes effective, which means the start of the season this year. However it is divided out equally over the course of the years of the contract regardless of whether the contract lasts.

    The 16 million in non-guaranteed money is yearly salary that is earned based on the terms of the contract. Meaning that in this case around an average of 3.2 million per year over five years is earned simply by being on the roster for those years.

    This was a poison pill meant to keep the Browns from offering to match the terms of the contract.

    The Jags offered far more guaranteed money plus yearly salary than Alex Mack or any other center should have expected and they offered him an escape clause which gives him 26 million plus his first two years’ salary. That 26 million guaranteed is currently spread out over the “five” years of the contract at $5.2 million per year. The remaining salary paid out is the non-guaranteed yearly salary. However regardless of how many years he plays the Browns owe him the entire amount if he is on the roster day one of this coming season. That means two years from now Alex Mack can walk away with the entire 26 million regardless of whether he stays for the duration of the remaining five years and the Browns are still on the hook for the salary cap hit on the guaranteed money.

  • Dupree

    My comments keep getting denied, I guess its because im including links. So I won’t link anything.

    If Im screwing up a rule or something, please let me know (Steelers Depot Moderators)

    Go to the website overthecap

    Click browns, 2014. Then click Alex Mack

    You will then see His contract structure which clearly states how it is (there is a little overview at the top, read it you will understand)

    I know what Im talking about. its 2 years/18 mil guaranteed in salary, Year 3 (his option year) is only guaranteed actually if injured or he opts out (didn’t know that) (i thought it was guaranteed no matter what

    So 18 + his 8 mil year 3 (which isn’t fully guaranteed but counts as a guaranteed number) is the 26

    its not pro-rated because it isn’t a signing bonus. Not all guarantees are pro-rated because not all guarantees are signing bonuses, there are other ways to do that.