The folks at OverTheCap.com have the breakdown of the contract extension for Bucs nose tackle Vita Vea. Tampa Bay signed Vea to a four-year extension through 2026 in a deal that includes next year’s fifth-year option.
Yet Vea will make slightly more than the fifth-year option amount in 2022. Pewter Report reported that Vea’s fifth-year option would be picked up last April 1, and that became official on April 26.
Vea, the team’s first-round pick in 2018, was scheduled to make $7.638 million under the fifth-year option. But he will actually get a bump in salary to $10,587,294, according to OverTheCap.com. That’s due in part to a $4,147,146 signing bonus he’ll receive this year. That bonus will be prorated in the amount of $829,429 per season over four years between 2022-05.
Vea has $500,000 in per game bonuses, bringing his total cap value next season to $11,916,723. Of that, $10,587,294 is fully guaranteed.
The Bucs could walk away from Vea at any point after 2022 with just a little dead salary cap money. Should Tampa Bay want to release Vea after 2023, the team would have just $2,488,288 in dead cap money and save $11,341,141. The dead cap money would fall to $1,658,859 after 2024, and just $829,429 after 2025.
The Bucs can also restructure Vea’s deal in 2022 and lower his $10,587,294 if they need some additional cap room.
The total value of Vea’s contract is $71 million through 2026. That’s an average of $17.75 million per year. That makes Vea the sixth-highest paid interior defensive lineman – right now. With the salary cap expected to make huge leaps in future years, Vea’s contract will end up being a bargain down the road.
Vea, who has a career high with four sacks this season, is an integral part of Tampa Bay’s defense. He will earn $12.5 million in base salary in 2023, $15.5 million in 2024, $16 million in 2025 and $17 million in 2026. Vea, who turns 27, has $500,000 in roster bonus money in each of the 2023 and 2024 seasons, and it goes up to $1 million per season in 2025 and 2026.