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Giants invest in Golden Tate’s experience, leadership

Deal is actually a 2-year deal with minimal dead money

NFL: Philadelphia Eagles at Los Angeles Rams Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

General manager Dave Gettleman, who hasn’t been shy about emphasizing leadership and culture in the New York Giants locker room, is turning to veteran receiver Golden Tate, who will be 31 years old in August, to provide a voice to a relatively young Giants receiving corps this season.

Tate said he is ready for the challenge.

“I’m going to teach all of our guys every piece of knowledge I can find,” he said during a conference call with the Giants beat writers Friday afternoon.

“This game has been great to me. I always thought I want to leave this game a lot better than it was when I came in. That includes me teaching what I know. If I can help the guys around me to play their best, I have a feeling that’s going to help our team collectively and it’s going to help us win more games.”

But just as Tate, who has 611 career receptions, is looking forward to sharing his knowledge with the youngsters, he’s also looking forward to learning from them.

“I’m excited to get in the room with a bunch of young talent and with guys I admire,” he said.

“I’m excited to share knowledge, get a feel for those guys, build a relationship with them and just ball out. I have a feeling there’s going to be a lot of opportunities for all of us. Let’s just play ball and see what happens.”

Thus far, Tate has been among the most “expensive” of the Giants free agent signings since the new league year began Wednesday.

Per league sources, his new deal includes $22.95 million in guaranteed money, which includes a $10 million signing bonus that will be prorated over 4 years; a $3 million roster bonus that will be paid out this year; and his 2019 and 2020 base salaries ($1.975 million and $7.975 million) being fully guaranteed. He will count for $7.5 million against the team’s 2019 cap.

Here is the rest of Tate’s contract:

Golden Tate

Year Base Salary Prorated Signing Bonus Roster Bonus Workout Bonus Cap Hit
Year Base Salary Prorated Signing Bonus Roster Bonus Workout Bonus Cap Hit
2019 $1,975,000 $2,500,000 $3,000,000 $25,000 $7,500,000
2020 $7,975,000 $2,500,000 $- $25,000 $10,500,000
2021 $8,475,000 $2,500,000 $- $25,000 $11,000,000
2022 $5,975,000 $2,500,000 $- $25,000 $8,500,000

With all of the guaranteed money coming in the first two years of the deal, the Giants can move on from Tate, if they so choose, after 2020 and be charged with a $5 million dead-money hit.

That might sound like a lot, but when compared to what they’ve recently had to eat — the $8 million for Olivier Vernon and the $16 million for Odell Beckham Jr. — that probably wouldn’t be a cap breaker.

With that said, remember that the current CBA ends after the 2020 season. As of now there are no early projections as to what the salary cap will look like after 2020.

However, when the current CBA was implemented, the increase between the 2009 salary cap (2010, the final year of the old CBA, was an uncapped year) to 2011 was in fact a decrease.

In other words, the final capped year of the previous CBA was $123 million while the first capped year of the new (current) CBA was $120 million — a $3 million net loss.

Since then the cap has risen steadily throughout the years, but in studying the structure of not only Tate’s deal but the others that are being handed out around the NFL, it’s interesting to see how teams might be preparing for just about anything when the new CBA is put into place.