If the Ravens can beat the Cleveland Browns on Sunday, Weddle will receive a bigger prize — a seven-figure one.
Weddle earns a $1 million incentive if he reaches the Pro Bowl and Baltimore makes the playoffs in the same season. After making his sixth Pro Bowl earlier this month, Weddle only needs the Ravens to defeat the Browns to cash in.
The Ravens’ projected chances are at 82.3 percent, the highest odds for a team not yet in the postseason.
“I would trade one million bucks for a chance at the playoffs any second,” Weddle said. “That’s just where I’m at. It’s not that I don’t appreciate money or how much money it is, but that’s not my incentive to try to go to win.”
General manager Ozzie Newsome and assistant GM Eric DeCosta have both reminded Weddle about the incentive, telling him that they have never wanted to pay $1 million more to somebody.
Weddle didn’t know about the incentive last year until Newsome brought it up to him. He lost out on the $1 million in brutal fashion in 2017.
In last year’s finale, the Ravens were seconds within a playoff berth until Tyler Boyd scored the winning, 49-yard touchdown on fourth-and-12, lifting Cincinnati to a 31-27 win over Baltimore.
“I didn’t lose $1 million. I never had it to begin with,” Weddle said after the game. “But I did lose out on a chance to win a Super Bowl. That is what I am mad about.”
Weddle, 33, is third on the NFL’s top-ranked defense in tackles (67) and has recorded one sack and three passes defensed.
“Weddle totally messed with Philip Rivers that entire game,” Martindale said. “He did an outstanding job. … He is what’s making other people make plays by how he’s messing with quarterbacks not knowing coverages, and he’s orchestrating that back there on the back end, and it’s just an invaluable piece to the defense that he gives and he brings.”
The incentive would represent a nice bump for Weddle, who is making $6.5 million in salary this season.
“I want a chance at getting to the Super Bowl. I also want everyone to experience the playoffs,” Weddle said. “That’s where my focus is. [The money is] just icing on the cake if we get it done.”