But the Browns also can escape either of the final two years of his deal. So both sides have some leverage.
A close look shows that the Jacksonville Jaguars really gave the Browns little to consider about matching the offer. It pays Mack well for two years, but it has no signing bonus, and though Mack can leave after two years -- he'll be 30 at that point -- the team can also let him go after three and thus not pay the final two.
Mack did receive fully guaranteed salaries of $10 million and $8 million in 2014 and 2015, according to ESPN’s Roster Management System.
He then can choose to stay or become a free agent again. What does he want to see these next two years that would keep him a Brown? Wins, he said.
If he stays, the third-year salary of $8 million is also fully guaranteed, which means he’d receive $26 million guaranteed.
After that, though, it’s up to the team.
Mack is due a $2 million roster bonus in the offseason before 2016, and another $2 million before 2017.
If the Browns pay either roster bonus, they keep Mack and also pay him a $6 million salary, a relative pittance if they feel Mack’s play warrants the roster bonus. That makes his salary-cap cost in both seasons $8 million.
But if they choose not to pay the bonus, the final two years or year would be wiped out and Mack would then become a free agent.
So Mack’s deal could be five years, it could be three or four at the team’s discretion, or it could be two years at his.
Total value of the deal if he stays all five years with the Browns: $42 million.