Starting 11 games, and seeing considerable playing time in two others, in place of an injured Lofa Tatupu, helped Seattle Seahawks middle linebacker David Hawthorne earn an additional $306,091 from the NFL's Performance-Based Pay program.
Minnesota Vikings center John Sullivan earned a league-high $397,555, according to Brad Biggs of the National Football Post.
A formula is used to calculate each player's playing time percentage and salary cap number to distribute the $3,422,875 each Club was allotted this year. Players with high playing-time percentages, and low cap numbers, receive a larger share of the funds.
Young linebackers and defensive backs routinely do very well in this program, as they are usually earning close to league-minimum salaries and special teams plays are part of the playing-time percentage calculation.
Hawthorne earned $385,000 in base salary as he led the Seahawks with 116 tackles, including a team-high 10 for a loss. Hawthorne tied for the team lead with three interceptions in 2009, and posted four quarterback sacks and two forced fumbles.
An exclusive rights free agent this off-season, the Seahawks tendered a qualifying offer to Hawthorne on March 4.
Seahawks Top 5 in PBP
1. David Hawthorne, LB - $306,091
2. Max Unger, G/C - $197,102
3. Justin Forsett, RB - $188,294
4. Nick Reed, DE - $172,008
5. Lawyer Milloy, S - $150,587
In addition to writing for NorthwestFootball.net, Brian McIntyre blogs daily at Mac's Football Blog. You can follow Brian on Twitter, and if you'd like to e-mail him, you can always do so by clicking here.
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