Report: Jadeveon Clowney Received $1 Million Bonus to Resolve Position Dispute

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistJanuary 8, 2019

Houston Texans outside linebacker Jadeveon Clowney (90) in action against the Washington Redskins in an NFL game, Sunday, November 18, 2018 in Landover, Md. (AP Photo/Daniel Kucin Jr.)
Daniel Kucin Jr./Associated Press

The Houston Texans reportedly paid Jadeveon Clowney a $1.005 million bonus before the conclusion of the 2018 NFL regular season to settle a dispute over whether he was a defensive end or outside linebacker.

On Tuesday, Field Yates of ESPN.com reported that players operating under the fifth-year option in their rookie contract can receive bonuses based on position and draft slot, but there was question about whether Clowney would receive his as a defensive end, which pays more, or a linebacker.

The settlement represented a middle ground between the two spots, per Yates.

Clowney, who's listed as both a defensive end and outside linebacker on the Texans' official roster, racked up 47 combined tackles, nine sacks and three fumble recoveries across 15 games in 2018.

Those numbers allowed the 25-year-old University of South Carolina product to earn his third straight Pro Bowl selection after two injury-plagued campaigns to open his career.

Although Pro Football Focus graded him as the NFL's 11th-best edge defender, Clowney said last week he believes there's ample room for improvement, per Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle.

"I don't know, I think I can be better," he said. "I still have a lot to work on. I'm young. I'm 25. I'm just getting better. I'm just really starting to get my groove in this game, learning the game like I need to learn it, but I still have a lot to grow, a lot I can improve. Just keep trying to get better as I get older."

Yates noted another showdown could loom between the Texans and Clowney's representatives in the offseason. If the sides can't agree on a contract extension, the front office will likely use the franchise tag to keep him, which also bases its financial value on position.

He's one of three key potential free agents from the league's fourth-ranked scoring defense, joining safety Tyrann Mathieu and cornerback Kareem Jackson.

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