Contract motivates Sean Lee even more

ARLINGTON, Texas -- Fresh off receiving a six-year extension that includes a $10 million signing bonus and as much as $20 million guaranteed, Sean Lee did not feel any different when he woke up Thursday.

“I have a lot of room to improve not only staying healthy but as a football player,” Lee said after the Dallas Cowboys practiced Thursday at AT&T Stadium. “This just motivates me even more to fulfill this and help our team win a Super Bowl.”

Language in the contract gives a nod to the fact that Lee has yet to play a full season in his first three years. If he participates in 80 percent of possible plays during games in either of the next two seasons, he will earn an extra $1.5 million on his 2015 base salary. He can earn an additional $7.5 million in playing-time escalators from 2016 to 2019.

“I think I’ve shown an ability to make plays and help our team win football games in the past, but I still need to find a way to stay on the field a whole year and continue to do that year after year, game after game,” Lee said. “That’s something I’m working on now. For the Jones family to give me this opportunity, I’m truly blessed.”

The base value of Lee’s extension is $42 million, with a maximum value of $51 million. Lee, who was entering the final year of his contract, said he never thought about waiting on a deal in hopes of being able to potentially cash in more.

“I think I would’ve been able to focus on football no matter what, but it’s definitely nice to have that off your plate and know you’re going to be here for a long time,” Lee said. “I’m going to do everything possible to help this team now and into the future.”