Breaking Down Deebo Samuel's $71.5M Extension

Breaking Down Deebo Samuel's $71.5M Extension

Our weekly series of “The next $50M Wide Receiver” continues, this time with Deebo Samuel, whose 3 year, $71.55M extension with the 49ers includes $41M fully guaranteed at signing. Our deep dive into the rest of the numbers continues here.


The $23.85M Average Salary

The new money average salary chimes in just above Terry McLaurin’s recent deal ($22.7M), and just under DK Metcalf’s ($24M).

Overall, the AAV is good enough for 8th among active wide receivers, and soon to be 1st on the 49ers (once the Garoppolo situation flushes out).


The $58.1M Guaranteed

But who’s counting average salaries anyway. The number that matters most at the onset of this contract is the $58.1M all of which becomes fully guaranteed by April 1st, 2023.

At the time of signing (+ a few days later), $41M of the contract fully locks in, including Deebo’s signing bonus, 2022 salary, 2023 salary, 2023 per game active bonus, 2023 workout bonus, a 2023 option bonus, and $4.555M of 2024 salary.

In other words, he’s good for a while. None of the $17.5M compensation for 2025 comes with an early vesting guarantee trigger, making it a veritable option year for the contract.

Deebo’s $41M guaranteed at signing ranks 5th among WR deals, while the $58.1M of practical guarantees chimes in 9th.


The Cash Flow

The $24.035M signing bonus + minimum $965,000 salary in 2022 means $25M of cash for the upcoming season. This ranks 7th among active wide receiver contracts (Metcalf is 1st with $31M).

From there, Samuel will see $36.2M in two seasons (16th), and $58.1M through three seasons (8th). 


The Cap Flow

Samuel’s 2022 cap hit rises from $5.1M to $6.6M (+$1.5M). His 2023 hit remains extremely team friendly ($8.68M) before things get a little squirrely. Two void years in 2026-2027 help keep things somewhat tamer.

2022: $6.6M
2023: $8.6M
2024: $28.5M
2025: $24.2M
2026: $8.49M (dead cap)

Deebo’s $20.9M base salary in 2024 is an obvious restructure candidate, a move that would jack up the 2025 hit, and the voidable dead cap as well.


Rushing Incentives

Deebo wasn’t lying. Early in the offseason, reports swirled that Samuel was unhappy with his role as a gadget offensive weapon, alluding the fact that he wanted to limit his rushing attempts in the 49ers offense.

He backed that sentiment up contractually, building in not-likely-to-be-earned incentives tied to Rushing Yards and Rushing Touchdowns.

2023-25 Annual Incentives (max $650,000)
$650,000 for 380+ Rush yards
$150,000 for 3 Rush TDs

In other words, the Niners can choose to use him this way - but it’ll cost them.


Concluding Thoughts

This is in no way a top of the market wide receiver contract, but it’s perfectly plausible that Deebo left a little cash on the table in order to guarantee his freedom before age 30. The deal mimics A.J. Brown’s contract nicely, including guaranteed per game active and workout bonuses splattered all over each year following the 2022 season.

With Top 10 guarantees, and Top 10 3-year cash payouts, there’s simply not much to complain about from the player’s perspective. Toss in the unique rushing incentives, and Deebo may become a $24.5M per year player for much of this contract.