KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Chiefs cornerback Charvarius Ward received a big bonus from his heavy workload in 2019, earning a performance bonus nearly 15 percent greater than his base salary.
Ward earned a combined distribution of $654,750 from the NFL’s performance-based pay pool, the most of any player in the league. New England center Ted Karras ranked second with a combined distribution of $635,947.
The second-year cornerback received $428,335 from the performance-based pay program and an additional $226,415 from the veteran pool.
The performance-based pay program is designed to compensate players based on their playing time and salary levels. The fund is designed to compensate players with a higher playing time percentages and lower salaries.
Ward earned a base salary of $570,000 in 2019, the minimum for a second-year player. He took the field for 95 percent of the team’s defensive plays for a total of 1,048 snap, second-most on the club behind safety Tyrann Mathieu (1,048). He also played 26 percent of the team’s special teams snaps with a total of 110 plays.
The undrafted free agent from Middle Tennessee State delivered big the for Chiefs in their Super Bowl season, winning the starting corner spot opposite Bashaud Breeland. Ward picked up 74 total tackles with two interceptions and 10 passes broken while allowing a passer rating 65.2.
Ward signed a three-year, $1.71 million contract as an undrafted free agent with Dallas in 2018. The Chiefs acquired Ward and his contract from the Cowboys in exchange for offensive lineman Parker Ehinger in August 2018. Ward remains under contract for 2020 with a base salary of $660,000 and is scheduled to become a restricted free agent after next season.