While no player wants to be cut, veteran defensive back Marquice Cole actually came out in front, financially speaking, by being released and subsequently re-signed by the Patriots a day later this week.
Cole was re-signed by the team in free agency to a one-year, minimum-salary contract that paid him a base value of $715,000.
Cole's newest deal, again for one year, will pay him $715,000 in base salary, but he now has the right to earn up to $1 million for the season through playing-time incentives.
The following are his benchmarks:
25 percent of defensive snaps: $95,000
35 percent of defensive snaps: $190,000
45 percent of defensive snaps: $285,000
Cole played just fewer than 18 percent of the defensive snaps last season, and with a role that projects to be similar in 2013, it's unlikely he'll reach the 35- or 45-percent plateau. That being said, if an injury ahead of him on the depth chart takes place, the 25-percent marker is not out of reach, which would reward Cole handsomely.