The Contract Incentives for Both Alexander Mattison and Byron Murphy Have Been Revealed for 2023

Vikings Beat the Bears, Win 13th Game of the Season
Jan 8, 2023; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Minnesota Vikings running back Alexander Mattison (2) greets fans after the game against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Matt Marton-USA TODAY Sports

Many contracts in the NFL are not fully guaranteed. Oftentimes, a set portion of the contract will get paid out in guaranteed salary, but a player will have to meet certain thresholds in order to earn the remainder of that money. Oftentimes, contract incentives are earned either by percentage of snaps played or by meeting certain statistical requirements.

On Wednesday, we found out the contract incentives for both Alexander Mattison and Byron Murphy. This is thanks to some digging done by Ari Meirov of The 33rd Team, who published an article going over incentives for multiple players across the league. Here is a look at the incentives for Mattison this year:

  • 750-999 rushing yards: $250,000
  • 1000+ rushing yards: $500,000 (original $250,000 plus additional $250,000)
Contract Incentives
Minnesota running back Alexander Mattison during the Minnesota Vikings Rookies minicamp at Twin Cities Orthopedics Performance Center in Eagan on Friday, May 3, 2019. (John Autey / Pioneer Press)

This offseason, the Vikings surprisingly re-signed the running back after being unable to come to an agreement on a contract extension the previous season. Largely, this dispute in 2022 was due to Mattison’s desire to be a starter in 2023, but with him being back in Minnesota, the onus has shifted towards the Vikings potentially moving on from four-time Pro Bowler Dalvin Cook.

Assuming Mattison becomes the starter in 2023, the hope would be that he surpasses that 1000-yard rushing mark, especially if the Vikings spend more time focusing on their rushing attack this year.

If Cook is no longer on the roster, and no other Vikings running back surpasses 1000 yards this season, it would be the first time since 2018 and just the fifth time since 2006 that the Vikings didn’t have a running back get past that 1000-yard threshold.

NFL: NFC Wild Card Round-New York Giants at Minnesota Vikings
Jan 15, 2023; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings running back Alexander Mattison (2) reacts after losing a wild card game against the New York Giants at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

Of course, it is more common for NFL backfields to be more of a committee rather than one main workhorse, so it wouldn’t be entirely surprising if he didn’t quite reach it. The pecking order of Minnesota’s backfield will be a very interesting storyline to watch as the summer progresses.

On the other side of the line of scrimmage, Murphy’s contract incentives for 2023 are a bit more complicated. They are as follows:

  • 70% of defensive snaps: $250,000
  • 75% of defensive snaps: $500,000 ($250,000 plus original $250,000)
  • 80% of defensive snaps: $750,000 ($250,000 plus original $500,000)
  • 85% of defensive snaps: $1 million ($250,000 plus original $750,000)
  • Named First-Team All-Pro: $1 million
  • Named Second-Team All-Pro: $500,000
  • Makes Pro Bowl on original ballot: $250,000
ESPN Lists Cardinals CB as "Best Fit" for the Vikings in Free Agency
Sep 18, 2022; Paradise, Nevada, USA; Arizona Cardinals cornerback Byron Murphy Jr. (7) celebrates after scoring on a 59-yard fumble recovery in overtime against the Las Vegas Raiders at Allegiant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

While Mattison’s incentives are largely based on production, the majority of Murphy’s incentives are based around availability. This makes sense considering the cornerback enters a rather thin Vikings secondary after a 2022 season with the Arizona Cardinals in which he missed eight games and played just 53.38% of the defensive snaps as a result.

Consistent availability from the Vikings new CB1 will make things much easier as the team attempts to improve their passing defense from a year ago that ranked 30th in yards per attempt allowed and 31st in total passing yards allowed.

It would be rather shocking if Murphy became a first-team or second-team All-Pro selection this year, having never received votes for either spot in the first four years of his career. If he returns back to his 2021 form, though, where he recorded four interceptions during the regular season, a Pro Bowl appearance could be possible if Minnesota’s defense looks better than last season.

The Vikings have not had a cornerback voted into the Pro Bowl since 2019 when Xavier Rhodes made the team.

Josh Frey is a Class of 2020 graduate of The College of Idaho and managing editor of When he’s not writing about the NFL, Josh enjoys running, gaming, or rooting for the Milwaukee Brewers and Bucks. Check out his Twitter account: @Freyed_Chicken.