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Danny O'Neil covers the Seahawks for The Seattle Times.

July 24, 2012 at 8:46 AM

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Was paycut impetus to Chris Clemons' agreement on a new deal?

Clemons agrees to new deal with the Seahawks
By Danny O'Neil | The Seattle Times

What we know: Defensive end Chris Clemons reached an agreement with the Seahawks on a multi-year extension. Neither side would specify the length of the deal, but it is believed to run through the 2014 season.

What we don't know: The financial terms of the deal, and just how lucrative it was going to be. His production stacked up favorably with players like Philadelphia's Trent Cole and Miami's Cameron Wake over these past two seasons, but Clemons is also a specialist who fits especially well in this particular defense. The fact the two sides had not agreed until the week before training camp speaks to there being a gap between the top-shelf deal Clemons was likely seeking and the one the Seahawks are offering.

What we're still trying to figure out: Just how big a factor the million-dollar paycut played in prompting the deal.

Before Clemons skipped the mandatory June minicamp, his contract called for him to make $4 million in 2012, the final year of his contract. That was due to reaching specific incentive clauses that spiked his deal up.

After missing the June minicamp, his salary went down to $3 million, and Brian McIntyre of reported that it was because Clemons' absence at the camp negated those escalators.

Now, if Clemons knew his absence was going to cost him 25 percent of his scheduled salary, it shows how determined he was to get a new deal. After all, if he was willing to risk losing 25 percent of his salary to miss that camp, it would speak to just how deeply he was committed to not playing under the terms of that old deal.

The other possibility is that he didn't know the full implications of missing the camp. If that was the case, he was suddenly staring at a situation in which he could either accept the deal the Seahawks were offering or play the final year of his contract for less than he made a year ago.

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