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On the Line This Weekend: the NFL Playoffs—and Millions of Dollars in Incentives

Jan 5, 2024

The final week of the NFL season is always a convoluted one as some teams fight for their lives while others rest starters in preparation for the postseason. But even for the least successful franchises of the year that have nothing to play for, players still have a lot on the line.

Week 18, which begins on Saturday, also represents the final opportunity for players to hit lucrative contract incentives tied to regular-season statistics. From securing a playoff spot to recording even part of a sack, here are five of the most notable (and attainable) marks on the line this weekend, each with their own rewards:

$2.2 million: Tampa Bay Buccaneers QB Baker Mayfield

Goal: Make the playoffs ($1 million) and finish in the top 10 of four passing categories ($300,000 each)
How close? Needs a victory over Carolina. Currently 6th in TD passes, 8th in yards, 9th in passer rating, and tied for 9th in yards per attempt
$2 million: Seattle Seahawks QB Geno Smith

Goal: Make the playoffs
How close? Needs a victory over Arizona and a Green Bay loss, or a number of scenarios involving ties

Source: Front Office Sports

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