Terms of the contract were not disclosed, but Sherman told ESPN’s Josina Anderson on Saturday that the incentive-laden deal is worth up to $39.15 million.
“Once I make a Pro Bowl, $8 million the next year is guaranteed for me. It gives me the ability to control my destiny. The 49ers have skin in the game. I have skin in the game. In my former contract, no matter what I did this year, nothing would be guaranteed to me next year. I couldn’t feel secure in my contract. Now, if I play the way I know I’m capable of playing, I know I’m going to get paid.”
Sherman said he called the Seahawks to gauge their interest on matching the 49ers’ offer but was turned down based on the incentives. He also reached out to the Oakland Raiders and Detroit Lions before finalizing the deal in San Francisco.
The returns here are hardly insignificant. The Browns sent the first pick of the third round to the Bills for Taylor, a selection which has delivered a pair of All-Pros in Travis Kelce and Kevin Byard in recent years. That pick gives the Bills five of the top 65 selections in this year’s draft, and after trading their former starting signal-caller, it seems incredibly likely that general manager Brandon Beane will move up to target his quarterback of the future early in the first round.
Trading up might also be easier if the Browns are out of the quarterback market. There was certainly scuttlebutt going around the NFL combine last week that Dorsey and the Browns were not overly enthused with any of the passer options available in this year’s draft, although I’d be hesitant to buy into that, given how much more of the draft process there is still to go and how wary teams are to play their hand with their interest in quarterbacks.
Taylor also has 283 carries for 1,575 yards and 14 touchdowns during that span, trailing only Cam Newton in all three categories. Taylor sits 20th in passing yards during those three seasons, but the low turnover rate and rushing numbers have made him a sneaky fantasy option. He ranked sixth at the position in fantasy points per game in 2015 and seventh in 2016, before plummeting to 19th during a disappointing 2017 campaign.
The offense in Cleveland will — believe it or not — be better than what Taylor had in Buffalo. He’ll be behind one of the league’s best offensive lines (Joe Thomas, Joel Bitonio, JC Tretter, Kevin Zeitler, Shon Coleman), with Duke Johnson Jr. (and a rookie — perhaps Saquon Barkley) in the backfield, rising star David Njoku at tight end and Landry, Josh Gordon and Corey Coleman at wide receiver. At least out of the gate, Taylor is best-viewed as a solid QB2 option, though if the team drafts a rookie in the top five, he may simply be keeping the seat warm for a few months.