2013 Offseason Primer: The Salary Cap

Posted by Brad On January – 11 – 2013
"Joe Flacco"

David Richard-US PRESSWIRE

Twenty four NFL teams have turned their full attention to the 2013 season and eight more will join them in a matter of time. With the CBA changing the way the teams have to think about the salary cap, teams are preparing earlier and earlier for their future cap.The 2013 salary cap is tentatively set to be at or just below $121 million. Inevitably, emails begin to rush in at this time of the year, seeking specific team’s salary cap situation. With that in mind, I will begin to look at the offseason in a three part breakdown. First, we tackle the current salary cap numbers.

The 2012 salary cap was set at $120.6 million. With the cap looking to increase by $300,000, it could spell trouble for teams and some high paid players. Teams are eyeing their future in negotiations, hence why you see guys like Drew Brees, Matt Forte, and Mike Wallace fighting tooth and nail for contracts. The flat-lined nature of the salary cap is forcing teams to keep a watchful eye on the coming years.

Clearly, hires around the National Football League at the executive level will be financial guys. In the past, teams coveted ‘football guys’ for executive leadership. Now the league is trending towards a ‘Wall Street’ approach with numbers crunchers and salary cap experts heading these giant organizations.

In 2013 and beyond, teams must spend 95% of the cap. Important to remember is that is a league wide average, and not an individual team minimum. In terms of minimum salary for each individual team, the salary floor is 89% of the cap.

Franchise and transition tags have been tentatively set but as with the overall cap number, it’s subject to change. The league year runs from March 1 to March 1, so nothing for 2011 will be official until March 1, 2013. Tag amounts are as follows;

QB $14.642 M $12.845 M
RB $8.079 M $6.851 M
WR $10.357 M $8.716 M
TE $5.962 M $5.105 M
OL $9.660 M $8.56 M
DT $8.306 M $6.919 M
DE $10.984 M $8.994 M
LB $9.445 M $8.216 M
CB $10.668 M $8.939 M
S $6.798 M $5.899 M
K/P $2.926 M $2.654 M

Click here to see the team by team breakdown of the 2013 salary cap

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