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Thursday, February 20, 2014

Cap Isn't Flat for '14

Adam Schefter and other reports show the NFL salary cap rising by 5% to $130 million, adding roughly $7 million to the spending limit.

That significantly impacts Carolina, who overthecap.com showed at $8.7 million but that ESPN had shown at much more (I'm not certain if OTC was accounting for the potential carryover from last year).  ESPN had Carolina as potentially $15 million under, though the discrepancy isn't fully resolved by the carryover (estimated at $6 million).

The $15 million ESPN quoted suggested an eventual $28 million to play with, though David Newton doesn't show his work on that one.  I'd have to assume that includes some cuts, obviously including Charles Godfrey.  I wouldn't worry as hard about the $28 million, but that $15 million - if true - becomes $17 million with the adjustment from an assumed $128 million cap to its expected space.

Regardless of what the amount is - and trust me, media in general won't get their combined story straight - this is good news.  The interesting end, since I can't call it bad news necessarily, will be to see how much of that surplus Dave Gettleman uses to get out of the future cap hell he professes.   Gettleman is claiming it's going to be a two year process, and I can only hope his intent is that this is one of those two years.

So, it's become a balance issue on Mint Street.  With some playoff success under their belts, a lot of the principal characters aren't working for their jobs right now.  There's potentially as much urgency to build sustained success as there would be to concentrate on 2014.

What might that mean?

Sacrifice.

Godfrey, for instance, might end up a straight cut ($2.1 million savings) instead of a June cut ($5.1 million), which in turn makes 2015 $3 million more manageable.  There's still a strategy that suggests the June cut instead (you have money available, but you don't have to use it - you can carry it over).

You could also do something drastic, like chop someone you didn't expect to be able to afford cutting.  Or you could pretend you can now afford to give Greg Hardy what he wants.

All 32 teams get this additional space, obviously, so maybe you lose an additional free agent to a windfall in Jacksonville, for instance.
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