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Christine Michael Contract: Packers get backup RB returns on veteran salary benefit

The Packers didn’t have to pony up much cash to bring back their backup tailback.

NFL: Green Bay Packers at Detroit Lions Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

On Wednesday, the Green Bay Packers brought back running back Christine Michael, the unrestricted free agent who finished the season in Green Bay in 2016. On Sunday, we learned the details of Michael’s new one-year contract, thanks to Tom Silverstein of

Michael is reportedly returning on a contract that will pay him a total of $800,000. That includes the fifth-year veteran minimum salary of $775,000, with the balance being taken up in signing bonus. As Silverstein indicates, the fact that the base salary is the league minimum means that Michael qualifies for the veteran salary exemption, which reduces his total salary cap hit to $640,000.

Michael’s return helps to solidify the running back position behind presumptive starter Ty Montgomery. The Packers have three tailbacks on the roster now, with Don Jackson also under contract. The cap hits for the three players for 2017 are as follows:

  • Montgomery: $788,636
  • Michael: $640,000
  • Jackson: $540,000

With those numbers in mind, it is likely that the Packers have among the least amount of their salary cap committed to the running back position among all teams in the NFL. Still, expect the team to draft a runner at some point in the 2017 NFL Draft.