Chronicle reporter Megan Manfull opens her article on the latest development in Texanville with the following paragraph:
Spencer, an offensive tackle out of Pittsburgh, will receive a $610,000 signing bonus on a four-year contract that voids to three years. He is slated to make $275,000 this season, $360,000 in 2007 and $440,000 in 2008. The deal is expected to be finalized today.
I have my limitations as a lawyer, so can someone explain to me what “a four-year contract that voids to three years” means? By the way, my understanding is that Spencer has not yet dispensed formally with his first name, which is Charles.
Manfull also reports that the Texans — who begin their pre-season camp next week — have signed all of their draft choices except University of Miami offensive tackle Eric Winston (3rd round, 66th player chosen in 2006 NFL draft). Winston’s agent is Drew Rosenhaus, which may explain why the once highly-touted Winston was still available for the Texans to pick up in the 3rd round of the draft.
Update: Ted Frank, who knows a bad regulation when he sees it, writes to explain the “four voiding to three” jibberish: “A four-year contract that voids to three years is a four-year contract where the fourth year can (and almost certainly will) be unilaterally voided by the player. The effect is to fool the salary cap by allowing the team to divvy the signing bonus over four years, rather than the three years that is the economic reality of the contract.”