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Current Salary Cap Status

Falcons 2012 Cap Room

According to Pat Yasinskas from ESPN, "The Falcons will have $30.6 million in cap space," based on the salary cap in 2012 being the same as it was in 2011. Using this information, it looks like Atlanta will be re-signing quite a few free agents this offseason, but could also be real players in free agency if they manage their cap right.

Problematic Cap Hits

Currently, Michael Turner is costing $7 million towards the cap, and it's given that his production has warranted a large contract. However, one must wonder whether Turner has been falling off a bit after getting over 300 carries in his first three years in Atlanta.

Atlanta could save around $5 million by cutting Turner for this year and another $5.5 million next year if they cut him after June 2nd.

Ovie Mughelli is in the last year of his contract, and if he's cut he could save $3 million in cap space. Ovie is coming off a nasty ACL and MCL injury and needs to show that he is fully recovered before the season. If not, the Falcons could cut him to save that money.

Sam Baker is owed $2.56 million on his contract that the Falcons can get out of easily. It would be smart to cut the dead weight in Baker this offseason.

Matt Ryan Extension could open up some cap room

The Falcons are looking into extending Matt Ryan's deal, and doing so could free up as much as $10 million this season for use in free agency.

Ryan is a very likely extension candidate as he has been a pro bowl caliber quarterback for the Falcons since 2008 and will only get better under Koetter's new scheme.

Add in his $13.5M cap hit for 2012 as it currently sits and Atlanta could sign him to a $100-plus million contract, and still have him with an extremely low cap hit for the 2012 season.

Total Possible cap savings

Between a possible Matt Ryan extension and possible releases of Turner, Mugheli and even Babineaux the Falcons could have up to $50 million in cap space in the 2012 season with just 3 more moves. It wouldn't be surprising to see the Falcons make those moves and use the cap to make a run at one of the free agents later in this article.

here is the boost!

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