Signing bonus counts towards guaranteed money. 16million plus his base salary for the first three years puts him at his 21million guaranteed.
I am not arguing that I know this shitt 100%. That being said the way I understand it, is yes he signed a 16 million dollar signing bonus. We paid it up front. However the cap hit for that signing bonus was spread over 5 years.
16 million divided by 5 = 3.2 million. In 11 3.2 of the 16 came off, this year another 3.2 came off.
so 3.2 x 2 = 6.4 million. Thats the number that has his hit our cap so far. So 16 million had to hit the cap, so far only 6.4 has, leaving us on the hook for 9.4 million more.
Heres a couple exceprts from askthecommish.com
That's cheating! How can you have a real salary cap if all you have to do is give a player a signing bonus to get around it? Answer:
Now we come to the tricky part. The signing bonus IS part of the player's salary. So it counts against the cap. When determining team and player salary, the signing bonus will be prorated over the length of the contract. For example, if a player signs a four-year deal with a $1 million signing bonus, $250,000 of that bonus will count toward team salary for each contract year ($1 million divided evenly over the four-year contract is $250,000 per year). If a team releases a player, the unamoratized bonus money (the remaining prorated bonus money) counts immediately against the cap.
In our example above, if the player is released after Year 1, the remaining $750,000 (the prorated signing bonus money for years 2-4) counts against the cap in Year 2 -- even though the player is no longer on the team's roster.
What happens if a player is traded or retires? Answer:
We already know that if a player is waived on or before June 1, the remaining signing bonus that has not been included in salary “accelerates” and is included in that year’s team salary. Acceleration also occurs when a player is traded
or waived and picked up by another team. The new team is not responsible for any of the original signing bonus. The team that waived or traded the player is responsible for the accelerated signing bonus (in the same manner as described above)."