Vernon, acquired from the New York Giants in March 2019, was scheduled to make $15.25 million in the final year of his deal.
According to yates, the new contract will pay Vernon a $7 million signing bonus and includes $11 million in guaranteed money by way of a $250,000 workout bonus and $3.75 million salary. He can also earn an additional $2 million in incentives.
Browns executive vice president and general manager Andrew Berry indicated in April the team’s desire to retain Vernon.
“Olivier is a good football player, and we like having good football players on the roster,” Berry said. “He is a talented defensive end. He is here and will continue to be here.”
In late May, defensive coordinator Joe Woods expressed his excitement over the depth on the defensive line with Vernon on the opposite side of Myles Garrett.
“I feel really good about it,” Woods said. “Obviously, with Myles, Olivier Vernon, Sheldon Richardson, the guys we have, Larry (Ogunjobi), the guys we added in the draft and [ Andrew] Billings in free agency, I feel really good. I have been part of teams, going back to Denver and San Francisco, where everything started up front.
“With the guys that we have on our defense right now, I feel like we can really do some things in the run game and in the pass game with the guys that we currently have.”
Prior to the agreement, the Browns could’ve cut Vernon with no cash or cap penalty.
Restructuring Vernon’s contract will save the Browns between $2.25 and $4.25 million in cash depending how many incentives Vernon hits.
The new deal also likely means the end of the pursuit of Jadeveon Clowney, who remains a free agent.
A knee injury sidelined Vernon for six games in 2019 that saw him finish with 3.5 sacks, 26 tackles and a forced fumble. He tried to return after missing three games before reinjuring himself and sitting out the remaining three.