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New Orleans Saints restructure Will Smith, Jonathan Vilma contracts, save nearly $11 million

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Will Smith took a $6 million pay cut (USA Today Sports Images)

To become salary cap compliant prior to the start of the 2013 league year, the New Orleans Saints have renegotiated the contracts of veteran defensive end Will Smith and linebacker Jonathan Vilma, Larry Holder of The Times-Picayune reported on Tuesday.

According to a source with knowledge of the reworked deals, Smith and Vilma reduced their cash compensation and cap numbers by nearly $11 million combined.

Smith was scheduled to earn $10.15 million in cash compensation in 2013, including a $1 million roster bonus on the 15th day of the league year, a $9 million base salary and a $150,000 workout bonus. Smith was scheduled to count $14.502 million against the cap. In the renegotiated deal, Smith's $1 million roster bonus and $150,000 workout bonus remain, but his salary has been reduced to $3 million, a $6 million pay cut that lowers his cap number to $8.502 million for the upcoming season.

The 2014 season on Smith's contract, which calls for a $10.4 million base salary, $1 million roster bonus and $150,000 workout bonus, was unchanged.

Vilma was scheduled to earn a $1.1 million roster bonus, which was due on Wednesday, along with a $100,000 workout bonus and $4.8 million salary for a 2013 cap number of $8.6325 million. Under the renegotiation, Vilma's roster bonus was erased and his base salary was reduced to $1 million. The Saints doubled his workout bonus to $200,000, all of which results in Vilma having a 2013 cap number of $3.8325 million, a reduction of $4.8 million for the upcoming season.

In addition to Smith and Vilma, the Saints saved $1.6 million in cash and cap space by releasing veteran linebacker Will Herring.

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