Earlier this week, the NFL released the top 25 performance-based pay bonuses and two Arizona Cardinals were on the list.
Free-agent strong safety Yeremiah Bell was eighth on the list having earned $263,097, and tackle Bradley Sowell was 18th with $247,150. Due to an agreement with the NFL Players Association, all players earning performance-based pay this year won't receive the money until April 1, 2016.
According to the NFL, the performance-based pay is calcuated through a formula that takes a player's regular-season playing time divided by his "adjusted" regular-season compensation -- which is his full-season salary, prorated portion of his signing bonus and earned bonuses. That number is a player's "index" which is then compared to his teammates' indexes to determine the amount of his performance-based pay.
In 2013, each team had $3.46 million to distribute specifically for performance-based pay. Any player who plays at least one snap is eligible for the bonus. In total, 1,996 payments were made last season, which comes to an average of about 62 per team. The average bonus in 2013 was $55,471, the median was $38,081 and the largest was $318,244, which went to Chicago Bears tackle Jordan Mills.