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Everything you need to know about our cap, potential cuts and free agents.

Feb 07 2013 10:30 AM panther4life Carolina Panthers
First of all here are the best links available to help you understand our cap situation and rules.

http://www.eaglescap...alyzingCBA.html (faq on the rules)

http://www.askthecom...laryCap/faq.asp (another faq on the rules)

http://www.spotrac.c...nthers/cap-hit/ (Our cap hits and access to details on every players contract..Click on specific player's full contract to see future cap hits and signing bonus money still counting against the cap in future years)

http://espn.go.com/n...ct-cap-strategy (Every teams updated cap space, except for Giants who have already begun making cuts).

Heres some things you need to know.

Signing bonus- This is guaranteed money players receive as soon as their contract is signed. This money can be and often is spread over the course of a player contracts for up to 5 years. This means the player already has the money but the hit against the cap is spread out. If we cut a player we are no longer responsible for their base salary and owe them nothing. The only deterrent to cutting a player with a large signing bonus is we still have to take the hit against the cap of whatever guaranteed money has not already been accounted for against the cap.

Base Salary- This is the yearly money a player will receive if still on the team, this money and their amortized signing bonus, plus any other workout bonus accounts for our total cap hit.

Dead Money- This refers to money that counts against the cap from players who were cut before their signing bonus has been fully accounted for against the cap.

June 1st cuts- Teams can divide up the remaining dead money or unaccounted for against the cap signing bonus money from players cut over the current year and the next.
*As we did with Wharton last year the new CBA allows for a team to cut up to 2 players before June 1st and still be designated as a June 1st cut, hence allowing a team to spread the hit over 2 years without officially having to wait until June to do so.

March 12th- This is our first deadline to be under the cap(first day of the league year and start of free agency). When we cut down to 53 in September we will have to make sure we are under the cap again.

131.8 Million- This is the amount we are currently have committed to the 2013 cap. The cap is right at 121 Million for 2013.

4,526,462- The amount of the dead money already hitting our cap for 2013. Most of this came from 2 players, Mare(2 Million) and Wharton(1.8 million)

4.5-5 million- The amount our rookie class should roughly count against our cap. (Brockers the 14th overall last year counted 2.164 Million against the rams cap last year, Mychal Kendricks the 46th overall pick last year count just over 1 million against the eagles cap last year thats roughly 3.75 million to our 2 first rounders, plus we'll have a few other picks counting less as well)

Easiest way to calculate for yourself- Go to the spotrac website referenced above. Look at the cap hits and how much remaining signing bonus money we have spread out on each player by clicking on their name. IF you cut that player ignore their base salary and just use the signing bonus money as a cap hit. Choose to spread it out over 1 or 2 years. Keep in mind spreading it out over 2 years can be very helpful but just creates more dead money down the road.


Ways to save without using June 1st rule and piling up dead money for 2014 as well
Cutting Gross would save us 10.7 Million
Cutting Gamble would save us 8.95 million
Cutting Ron Edwards would save us 2.5 million
Cutting Gary Williams would save us 1.125 Million
Cutting Hangartner would save 1.575
Cutting Nakumara would save $967,000


*We could cut other players but if won't save us close to a million no point in fooling with them right now.

**Gross and Gamble should be very easy to restructure as their contracts are almost up and have very little leverage because their remaining signing bonus money to hit the cap is very small(1 Million for Gross and 2 million for Gamble).

Players that would have to be a june 1st cut to save us money this year and by default next year too, but will cause dead money to be on the books in 2014.
Cutting Beason would have an immediate savings of 3.5 million this year and 6.75 million next year.

Cutting Deangleo would have an immediate savings us of 3.4 million in 13 and 4.4 million in 2014. Cutting D-will will also create another 4.6 million in dead money for 2014, because he has a total of 9.6 million in signing bonus scheduled to hit the cap over the next 3 years.

Further reading on Beason situation.
Something has to be done here because not only does he have a large cap hit for 13(9.5 million) it goes up to 10.75 in 2014 and 11.75 in 2015. Since he has 12 million in signing bonus money scheduled to hit the books over the next 3 years( 4 million a year) if we cut him now it would require an immediate hit of the full 12 million. That is more than his current cap hit of 9.5 million if we keep him. Therefore if were going to cut him it makes more sense to do it as a june 1st cut if looking for the cap relief for this year. However if Gettleman can get us under the cap without making him a june 1st cut 2014 will have a much better outlook as we won't have 6 million in dead money already committed to the books.

Further reading on Deangleo Williams situation.

Cutting D-will will also create another 4.6 million in dead money for 2014, because he has a total of 9.6 million in signing bonus scheduled to hit the cap over the next 3 years. If we can bite the bullet on him for this year and hold off on cutting him until next year it would be much more ideal from a fiscal sense. If we cut him next year we can do it before June 1st and still save 2.8 million without carrying over dead money into 2015.

1 other wildcard here would be James Anderson but much like Deangleo if you look at his contract it makes much more sense to wait another year on him .http://www.spotrac.com/nfl/carolina-panthers/james-anderson.

In summary it looks nice and pretty to cut Gamble and Gross but because they have little signing bonus money yet to hit the cap, it provides us a good leverage in negotiating a restructure or small extension. On the flip side someone like Beason who has 12 million in signing bonus money yet to hit our cap has the upper hand on us in regards to not renegotiating if does not want to. I just think much like Wharton, Beason's time is up because we have drafted his much cheaper replacement.

Heres our 2013 Unrestricted Free Agents
Dwan Edwards
Jordan Senn
Antwan Applewhite
Captain Munnerlyn
Louis Murphy
Sherrod Martin
Ben Hartstock
Gary Barnidge
Mike Pollack
Derek Anderson

Restricted Free Agents
Jason Phillips
Nate Ness
Richie Brockel
Andre Neblett

**also something to keep in mind is that Hardy will be a free agent next year and Cam the following year. Both these players are on pace to demand larger contracts so we need to cut back on the trend of doing june 1st cuts and carrying "dead money" over as much as possible so we can retain them.

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175 Comments

:: before


What? What's that? Someone that actually knows how to talk football and is not using Madden 13 as a base for their argument/opinion?

You sir win the internet....for today. :)
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I agree with all your cap numbers except for Nakamura's. Pat Y in his ESPN article a month or so ago said the Panthers could save $1.8m by cutting him:

Haruki Nakamura: The Panthers signed him as a free agent in 2012, and Nakamaura didn’t really work out. The Panthers could free up $1.8 million by releasing him.


http://espn.go.com/b...e-cap-situation

Trying to figure out what the discrepancy is. Of course, wouldn't be surprised if Pat Y is just flat out wrong.
OP, thank you sir.
Nice job.

So I'm reading that as we have to get down roughly between $15.3 and $15.8 million to meet the 2013 cap.

Fun times.

I agree with all your cap numbers except for Nakamura's. Pat Y in his ESPN article a month or so ago said the Panthers could save $1.8m by cutting him:



http://espn.go.com/b...e-cap-situation

Trying to figure out what the discrepancy is. Of course, wouldn't be surprised if Pat Y is just flat out wrong.


He does it for a living so I trust him to a degree but if you look here http://www.spotrac.c...aruki-nakamura/ , his total cap figure is only listed at 1,633,000 and we would have to absorb 666,000 of "dead money" or unamortized "signing bonus" money and thats how I came up with my figure.

Nice job.

So I'm reading that as we have to get down roughly between $15.3 and $15.8 million to meet the 2013 cap.

Fun times.


Yes and no. The rookies won't hit our cap until we cut down to 53. So for now we only need to cut 11.7 or 11.8 depending on the source you read to get under before the league year starts on March 12th. Then the 2nd time we have to be under the cap is when we cut down to 53 and their contracts will factor in by then.

Nice job.

So I'm reading that as we have to get down roughly between $15.3 and $15.8 million to meet the 2013 cap.

Fun times.


We also have draft picks to sign....so I think we need to get down even more to have room to sign them.
Gary Williams and Hangman are probably the easiest cuts. Then, hopefully you can restructure a few guys. I wish we got more relief from losing one of the linebackers, because we just have too many making too much money.

Was there Spotrac data on Gamble? Because it wasn't there last time I checked.

Yes and no. The rookies won't hit our cap until we cut down to 53. So for now we only need to cut 11.7 or 11.8 depending on the source you read to get under before the league year starts on March 12th. Then the 2nd time we have to be under the cap is when we cut down to 53 and their contracts will factor in by then.

We also have draft picks to sign....so I think we need to get down even more to have room to sign them.


Yeah I added the rookie # guestimate he had to that cap figure, so it included signing the rookies.

Great info p4l.
did you figure in the roll over money from last year?


good read,btw.

Gary Williams and Hangman are probably the easiest cuts. Then, hopefully you can restructure a few guys. I wish we got more relief from losing one of the linebackers, because we just have too many making too much money.

Was there Spotrac data on Gamble? Because it wasn't there last time I checked.


Yeah it's there. $7.95m base salary, $1m remaining signing bonus, $2m "other' bonus
Now this is helpful info. Thank God

did you figure in the roll over money from last year?


good read,btw.


Pretty sure he did, without the rollover we were projected to be something like $15m over the cap

did you figure in the roll over money from last year?


good read,btw.

yes I did, well technically Clayton did and I used his info for reference.
Good post.

I look at that list of FA's and see nobody other than Munnerlyn, Neblett, and Senn (simply because I like him) that I really feel we need to keep. I say let them walk and bring them back if we need the depth.
one of the best posts of the past year. Awesome job man.
All good info! Good stuff

Good post.

I look at that list of FA's and see nobody other than Munnerlyn, Neblett, and Senn (simply because I like him) that I really feel we need to keep. I say let them walk and bring them back if we need the depth.


I see Ron Edwards as a sure fire cut, so if thats the case I think we need to find a way to retain Dwan at least another year. No way I want a rookie/Fua or Neblett starting at DT next year.
I promoted this to an article. Then it seemed to have copied the OP as well...
I like Neblett as a player and feel he has rook to grow, but yes, if that's the case with Ron, Whig I too feel is quite possible, than bring Dwan back.
you could figure clausen in there, but that money would probably go right into paying for another backup.

that brings up another question i have, tho.

guys like clausen who have certain performance escalators built into their contracts have to have all potential money accounted for in the cap whether they actually hit it or not, correct? i'm just wondering what kind of effect their not being able to hit those escalators might have on the overall cap.

also more specifically about clausen, i saw this on rotoworld...

7/28/2010: Signed a four-year, $6.3 million contract. The deal includes $2.533 million guaranteed and a fourth-year escalator that could boost Clausen's 2013 base salary to $2.85 million. Even if Clausen does not activate the escalator, his 2013 salary is fully guaranteed. 2013: $630,000, 2014: Free Agent

i'm assuming that the 2.85 escalator won't be hit, but that money still has to be accounted for. are people leaving that out when looking at his cap hit?

We also have draft picks to sign....so I think we need to get down even more to have room to sign them.

Yeah I added the rookie # guestimate he had to that cap figure, so it included signing the rookies.

Great info p4l.


A couple of things to remember about the cap in regards to rookies. When a drafted player signs his contract, the team is charged against its salary cap according to the Top 51 Rule, and it is charged against its rookie pool according to the rules in Article 7.

Let's consider a seventh-round draft pick who signs a four-year contract with minimum base salaries and a $44,000 signing bonus and who was selected by a team with its 51st-highest cap number being $480,000 (for a second-year player with a $465,000 base salary). The rookie's first-year cap number would be $401,000, consisting of his $390,000 base salary and his $11,000 bonus proration. Because he was drafted, the entire $401,000 would count against his team's rookie pool, replacing his automatic tender. But because he is below his team's top 51 cap numbers, only his $11,000 bonus proration counts against the salary cap during the offseason.

Now consider a third-round draft pick for the same team. He signs a four-year contract with minimum base salaries and a signing bonus of $700,000. His first-year cap number would be $565,000, consisting of his $310,000 base salary and his $175,000 bonus proration. All $565,000 would count against his team's rookie pool and against his team's salary cap. However, by assuming his place among the team's top 51 cap numbers, he knocks the player with a $480,000 cap number ($465,000 base salary) out of the team's top 51. For that player, his base salary no longer counts against the cap, leaving only the other $15,000 counting against the cap. The net result is that the team's cap room is reduced by only $100,000 — the draftee's $565,000 is charged against the cap, but the second-year player's $465,000 base salary no longer is.

As you can see, as long as his team already has at least 51 players signed or tendered, a draftee's effect on his team's salary cap is far less than his rookie pool charge. Most people forget this when they consider how much cap room must be "set aside" for rookies. You'll often see people say that, for example, if a team has $4 million of cap room and a rookie pool of $5 million, it will need to clear another $1 million from its cap in order to sign all of its draft choices. Of course, if the team already has close to or more than 51 players signed or tendered, that's wrong, because that team's rookies will reduce its salary cap by far less than $5 million, as shown above.
Cutting Gross right now sounds like a terrible idea to me, who do we have that's ready to step in at LT???

Gamble can go as far as I'm concerned. He's been giving us 75% effort for the last few years and we have some promising young guys on the roster.
Good info.

Man, I don't see a team picking anybody off of our free agent lists. That is some subpar talent right there. Good lord Hurney.