When the Steelers have the player they want, they'll pay him.
The Jacksonville Jaguars signed restricted free agent center Alex Mack to a 5-year, $42 million offer sheet this offseason, a deal that included $26 million in guaranteed money, all in his base salary. He also has the option of opting out of the deal after the 2015 season.
Pouncey reportedly received a $13 million signing bonus to go along with what is now the biggest contract for a center in the NFL in terms of overall value.
Some will speculate whether Pouncey is a better center than Mack, but clearly, the Steelers are at least putting them on the same level. The real question for Pouncey is injuries. Along with the torn ACL and MCL last year, Pouncey has been plagued with ankle sprains, not to mention his broken leg suffered after performing at an outstanding level in the AFC Championship game against the Jets after the 2010 season.
Clearly, Pouncey used Mack's deal as a starting point. While Pouncey got the signing bonus up front that Mack did not, Mack has guaranteed money over the next three years, whereas Pouncey does not. He'll be paid non-guaranteed roster bonuses in 2015 ($4.75 million) and 2016 ($3.5), according to Pro Football Talk.