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How the Falcons can fix their salary cap in 4 steps. (Espn+)


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Projected cap space: Minus-$15.8 million

Key free agents: RB Todd Gurley, C Alex Mack, K Younghoe Koo, S Keanu Neal, S Damontae Kazee

1. Do something about QB Matt Ryan. Remember how Roethlisberger has the largest cap hit in football? Well, after he restructures his deal, the largest cap hit in 2021 will instead belong to Ryan, who has a $40.9 million hold. There are three ways the Falcons might address that number:

Restructuring Ryan's deal. If the Falcons plan to keep Ryan through the end of 2022, the easiest way to create some breathing room is to restructure his contract. He has a $23 million base salary due in 2021. Converting $21 million of that into a signing bonus means the Falcons could spread that $21 million over the final three years of his extension, leaving them accountable for just $7 million of that figure in 2021. In the process, they would save $14 million in cap space this upcoming season, making them cap compliant with one signature.

Trading Ryan before June 1. If they want to draft a quarterback and move on from their longtime starter, they have a question of timing to consider. The league uses June 1 as a cutoff point for a number of contractual issues, including whether a free agent qualifies a team to receive a compensatory pick. Here, we're looking at how the league treats future bonuses that have been paid but not accounted for on a team's cap. If a team cuts or trades a player before June 1, all of the unaccounted bonus money accelerates onto the cap in the current year. (The league lets teams designate two players as post-June 1 cuts even if a team cuts them before June, but no such provision exists for trades.)

For Ryan, that's a significant amount. The Falcons already owe $17.9 million in accounting charges for him on their 2021 cap, and if they traded him before June 1, another $26.5 million in unaccounted cap charges would accelerate onto their 2021 cap. They would owe $44.4 million in dead money for him, which is less than it would cost to actually have him on the roster in 2021 without a restructure.

Typically, I would say that would make a Ryan trade a non-starter, but we've seen teams absorb staggering amounts of dead money to get out of deals. The Rams have eaten more than $30 million in dead money in consecutive seasons to move on from Brandin Cooks, Todd Gurley and Jared Goff. The Eagles swallowed nearly $34 million in 2021 to move on from Carson Wentz. I would say that a Ryan trade before June 1 would be very unlikely but not impossible.

Trading Ryan after June 1. Moving on from him after June 1 makes more sense, although it would require the Falcons to either agree to terms on a deal before June or deal him at reduced value after the organization (presumably) drafts a quarterback in the first round. Dealing Ryan after June 1 would spread the dead money over two years, leaving the team with $17.9 million in dead money in 2021 and the remaining $26.5 million in 2022.

In addition to being stuck with a lame-duck quarterback on its roster for most of the spring, the benefits of those cap savings would mean less to Atlanta because of when they come. The team would be stuck with Ryan on its roster throughout virtually all of free agency, and while it would eventually free up $23 million in 2021 cap space, those savings wouldn't come until June, when the vast majority of the league's free agents should be under contract. The Falcons can roll those savings into 2022, but I don't think it would help their case all that much in 2021 to wait on a Ryan deal.

2. Restructure WR Julio Jones. The star wideout has a $23.1 million cap hit, and the Falcons can reduce that figure by converting most of his $15.3 million base salary into a signing bonus. With three years left on his contract, Atlanta can take $14.1 million of that figure and divide it by three for cap purposes. There's no downside for Jones, who gets paid a bonus upfront in March as opposed to making his money week by week during the season. By doing this, the Falcons free up $9.4 million in cap room.

3. Do the same with OT Jake Matthews and LB Deion Jones. Both Matthews and Jones have three years left on their respective deals. Matthews has the largest cap hit for any left tackle in the league despite making it to one Pro Bowl in seven seasons, but the Falcons aren't in position to turn away a solid player. Converting $12 million of his $13 million base salary to a bonus frees up $8 million in 2021. They can also take $6 million from Jones' $8.2 million base, convert that to a bonus and create $4 million in room.

Restructuring those four deals gets the Falcons a little more than $23 million under the projected cap. That's enough to franchise-tag (or extend) Koo and start working on the defensive woes. Calvin Ridley is eligible for an extension this offseason, but the Falcons will probably be stuck waiting until 2022 to extend their talented young receiver.

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I wish folks would spend more time learning how things work and less time complaining about those things they don't understand lol

Projected cap space: Minus-$15.8 million Key free agents: RB Todd Gurley, C Alex Mack, K Younghoe Koo, S Keanu Neal, S Damontae Kazee 1. Do something about QB Matt Ryan. Remember how Roethli

I counted 3 steps. Also, re-signing grady should be on there. Extending him could easily free up 10 mil this year.

56 minutes ago, hollywood said:

Restructuring Ryan's deal. If the Falcons plan to keep Ryan through the end of 2022, the easiest way to create some breathing room is to restructure his contract. He has a $23 million base salary due in 2021. Converting $21 million of that into a signing bonus means the Falcons could spread that $21 million over the final three years of his extension, leaving them accountable for just $7 million of that figure in 2021. In the process, they would save $14 million in cap space this upcoming season, making them cap compliant with one signature.

Great and so logical.  Ryan having a $50 mil cap hit in 2022 will certainly put the Falcons in super bowl contention.

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1 hour ago, hollywood said:

2. Restructure WR Julio Jones. The star wideout has a $23.1 million cap hit, and the Falcons can reduce that figure by converting most of his $15.3 million base salary into a signing bonus. With three years left on his contract, Atlanta can take $14.1 million of that figure and divide it by three for cap purposes. There's no downside for Jones, who gets paid a bonus upfront in March as opposed to making his money week by week during the season. By doing this, the Falcons free up $9.4 million in cap room.

Jones after the restructure would have a cap hit of $24 mil in 2022.  So with Ryan and Jones restructured they will count $73 million against the cap in 2022.  Basically a third of the cap on two players.

Edited by Someday soon
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See this we are in jail bit with no room to manoeuvre is the biggest load of horse manure spread on these boards.When in all actual fact there are boat loads of options.

The contracts given were no doubt built on the projections of the cap increases that would have happend less COVID.

Thee only real spanner in the works is the latter mentioned and the guys responsible for the cap basically have to earn there cash and have every scenario covered.

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So Tom Brady signed a new contract yesterday and it was widely reported as a two year extension that would tie him to the Patriots until 2021. More details came out today that completely changed the story- Brady actually received a raise for this year from the Patriots but the two extra years are voidable years meaning the Patriots have no rights to Brady past 2019. The question that Im getting now after that information came out is what exactly are void years?

Voidable contract years are basically fake contract seasons that are simply used for salary cap manipulation. I’m not entirely sure where they began but they have been used for ages dating back to old rookie contracts where void years were used to defer when teams would take a cap charge for a bonus. The purpose of the void year is to allow a team to pay a player a signing bonus and prorate for more years than actually exists on the contract. Basically its buying on credit with the cap- buy now and pay later.

Because this deals with Brady and the Patriots and there has always been this feeling that those two work hand in hand to gain an edge some are wondering if this is some sneaky Patriots shenanigans, but this is a common thing in the NFL. In fact teams like the Eagles and Saints live by using voidable contract years for many of their players.

The reason New England needed to use this with Brady is because they were not going to have the cap room to give Brady a raise. Did they have to give Brady a raise? No, but last year Brady was unhappy with his $15 million salary and they added incentives to earn another $5 million so it would make sense that the two sides would do a new deal since he was playing on the same $15 million salary this year.

The Patriots had in the ballpark of $7.5 million in cap room before the new deal with Brady which obviously is not enough to give Brady a straight raise. Even a moderate raise would run them so close to the cap limit once they go to a regular season accounting system so they had to find a way to reduce Brady’s cap charge while giving him a raise.

By my calculations the Patriots likely gave Brady a $20.25 million bonus and reduced his base salary from $15 to $2.75 million. They will now get to prorate that $20.25 million over three seasons ($6.75M a season) rather than take the hit all this year, lowering his cap hit by $5.5 million even though they increased his compensation. By lowering his cap figure it technically also would have made it even easier for the Patriots to franchise tag him after the year, hence the no tag provision in the contract.

Here is how the cap charges work out on this contract with a void and without a void.

Year Void Contract Non-Void Contract
2019 $21,500,000 $35,000,000
2020 $6,750,000 $0
2021 $6,750,000 $0

So as you can see it’s a pretty big swing in cap room for 2019 by using the void. In both cases they have to account for $35 million on the cap its just the timing that the void changes.

The way the contract will work is as follows. Brady will play with the Patriots this season just as he would have had there been no raise. The Patriots and Brady as the season plays out can work on an extension that would keep Brady as a Patriot. The two sides have until the day before free agency begins in 2020 to sign an extension. If they sign a new deal before that date Brady will have to account for $6.75 million in proration from the $20.25 million bonus in 2020 and 2021.

If Brady and the Patriots fail to reach a new agreement by that date Brady’s remaining two contract years will void and he becomes a free agent. If that happens, Brady’s $6.75 million proration from 2021 will accelerate into 2020, meaning the team would need to account for $13.5 million in cap charges next year just from this contract. Nothing would prohibit Brady from signing back with the Patriots after the contract voids but the Patriots would have to account for that added $6.75 million on the cap in addition to any new salary.

Void years are not really a bad thing if used properly. The big downside is when you use the void years well beyond what is the expected playing time for a player you are setting yourself up for a massive cap charge down the line for a player not on the team. I guess you can argue that if a Brady or a Drew Brees retires you are going to go into such a deep rebuilding mode than it doesn’t matter what the cap charge is since you are pulling back and don’t care about the cap but teams that use it for multiple players can waste valuable space if they don’t have any intention of bringing the player back.

From a quick glance at this deal my guess is the Patriots are internally thinking Brady will likely be a starter for at least 2019 and 2020 and perhaps 2021. $13.5 million in dead money next year would not be a killer if things really went south and $6.75 million in 2021 is certainly manageable. In that respect this is better than the Brees contract where voids were not staggered as well and would cost the Saints over $20 million if he retired after this season.

But the real gist of the contract is that the Patriots were doing a raise for Brady and this was the way they could do it from a cap perspective. Given Brady’s age its easier to work year by year than negotiating a long term deal and most likely they agree on a new one year deal in February and keep going and going in that manner until Brady one day shows his age.

 

https://overthecap.com/tom-brady-and-voidable-contract-years/amp/

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4 minutes ago, FalconFanSince1969 said:

So Tom Brady signed a new contract yesterday and it was widely reported as a two year extension that would tie him to the Patriots until 2021. More details came out today that completely changed the story- Brady actually received a raise for this year from the Patriots but the two extra years are voidable years meaning the Patriots have no rights to Brady past 2019. The question that Im getting now after that information came out is what exactly are void years?

Voidable contract years are basically fake contract seasons that are simply used for salary cap manipulation. I’m not entirely sure where they began but they have been used for ages dating back to old rookie contracts where void years were used to defer when teams would take a cap charge for a bonus. The purpose of the void year is to allow a team to pay a player a signing bonus and prorate for more years than actually exists on the contract. Basically its buying on credit with the cap- buy now and pay later.

Because this deals with Brady and the Patriots and there has always been this feeling that those two work hand in hand to gain an edge some are wondering if this is some sneaky Patriots shenanigans, but this is a common thing in the NFL. In fact teams like the Eagles and Saints live by using voidable contract years for many of their players.

The reason New England needed to use this with Brady is because they were not going to have the cap room to give Brady a raise. Did they have to give Brady a raise? No, but last year Brady was unhappy with his $15 million salary and they added incentives to earn another $5 million so it would make sense that the two sides would do a new deal since he was playing on the same $15 million salary this year.

The Patriots had in the ballpark of $7.5 million in cap room before the new deal with Brady which obviously is not enough to give Brady a straight raise. Even a moderate raise would run them so close to the cap limit once they go to a regular season accounting system so they had to find a way to reduce Brady’s cap charge while giving him a raise.

By my calculations the Patriots likely gave Brady a $20.25 million bonus and reduced his base salary from $15 to $2.75 million. They will now get to prorate that $20.25 million over three seasons ($6.75M a season) rather than take the hit all this year, lowering his cap hit by $5.5 million even though they increased his compensation. By lowering his cap figure it technically also would have made it even easier for the Patriots to franchise tag him after the year, hence the no tag provision in the contract.

Here is how the cap charges work out on this contract with a void and without a void.

Year Void Contract Non-Void Contract
2019 $21,500,000 $35,000,000
2020 $6,750,000 $0
2021 $6,750,000 $0

So as you can see it’s a pretty big swing in cap room for 2019 by using the void. In both cases they have to account for $35 million on the cap its just the timing that the void changes.

The way the contract will work is as follows. Brady will play with the Patriots this season just as he would have had there been no raise. The Patriots and Brady as the season plays out can work on an extension that would keep Brady as a Patriot. The two sides have until the day before free agency begins in 2020 to sign an extension. If they sign a new deal before that date Brady will have to account for $6.75 million in proration from the $20.25 million bonus in 2020 and 2021.

If Brady and the Patriots fail to reach a new agreement by that date Brady’s remaining two contract years will void and he becomes a free agent. If that happens, Brady’s $6.75 million proration from 2021 will accelerate into 2020, meaning the team would need to account for $13.5 million in cap charges next year just from this contract. Nothing would prohibit Brady from signing back with the Patriots after the contract voids but the Patriots would have to account for that added $6.75 million on the cap in addition to any new salary.

Void years are not really a bad thing if used properly. The big downside is when you use the void years well beyond what is the expected playing time for a player you are setting yourself up for a massive cap charge down the line for a player not on the team. I guess you can argue that if a Brady or a Drew Brees retires you are going to go into such a deep rebuilding mode than it doesn’t matter what the cap charge is since you are pulling back and don’t care about the cap but teams that use it for multiple players can waste valuable space if they don’t have any intention of bringing the player back.

From a quick glance at this deal my guess is the Patriots are internally thinking Brady will likely be a starter for at least 2019 and 2020 and perhaps 2021. $13.5 million in dead money next year would not be a killer if things really went south and $6.75 million in 2021 is certainly manageable. In that respect this is better than the Brees contract where voids were not staggered as well and would cost the Saints over $20 million if he retired after this season.

But the real gist of the contract is that the Patriots were doing a raise for Brady and this was the way they could do it from a cap perspective. Given Brady’s age its easier to work year by year than negotiating a long term deal and most likely they agree on a new one year deal in February and keep going and going in that manner until Brady one day shows his age.

 

https://overthecap.com/tom-brady-and-voidable-contract-years/amp/

I wish folks would spend more time learning how things work and less time complaining about those things they don't understand lol

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One thing no one can project with any certainty....  the salary cap limit is based on NFL profits.  Will the league profits go up this upcoming season?  If not this cap number is frozen.  Or.... worse case scenario.... NFL profits actually go down -again- next season.  If that happens?  Salary cap goes down again too.

For now, though... say the Falcons do end up with plus-23 million in cap space.  Falcons have 29 players, need 24 more players.   Our nine draft picks will take up 8-10 million, so 15-17 mill for fifteen open roster spots left.   If all 15 pots were filled with min wage rookies at about 250k per.... thats 3.75 million.   So... around 10 million left.   Signing Koo, Gono and possibly Graham takes up nearly all of that.

I see no way in hades, that this team can afford any notable FA's.  Maybe someone for 4-5 mill on a one year deal, but that's about it.

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22 minutes ago, athell said:

I wish folks would spend more time learning how things work and less time complaining about those things they don't understand lol

Even worse is that this is posted on OTC it also tells me that people talking CAP JAIL are only skimming the numbers and aren’t digging deeper at all.

2’ in front of your face checkers type stuff.

Just aswell the powers that be are chess players.

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1 minute ago, Falcons_Frenzy said:

Good to know. The team isn't cap doomed like this forum seems to think. 

Eh, kicking the can is how we ended up in this mess.  We need to stop, and learn from the past.  Restructuring all those contracts would be the same thing TD did for years.  Most on this forum can't file their own taxes, let alone read a PnL or Balance sheet. Accounting doesn't make money magically, your just robing Peter (the future) to pay Paul (today). 

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16 minutes ago, AlabamaFalconFan said:

Eh, kicking the can is how we ended up in this mess.  We need to stop, and learn from the past.  Restructuring all those contracts would be the same thing TD did for years.  Most on this forum can't file their own taxes, let alone read a PnL or Balance sheet. Accounting doesn't make money magically, your just robing Peter (the future) to pay Paul (today). 

Apparently you can't even read this thread. Its not that simple. The cap is complicated and there's a hundred different ways to move money around. 

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1 hour ago, FalconFanSince1969 said:

So Tom Brady signed a new contract yesterday and it was widely reported as a two year extension that would tie him to the Patriots until 2021. More details came out today that completely changed the story- Brady actually received a raise for this year from the Patriots but the two extra years are voidable years meaning the Patriots have no rights to Brady past 2019. The question that Im getting now after that information came out is what exactly are void years?

Voidable contract years are basically fake contract seasons that are simply used for salary cap manipulation. I’m not entirely sure where they began but they have been used for ages dating back to old rookie contracts where void years were used to defer when teams would take a cap charge for a bonus. The purpose of the void year is to allow a team to pay a player a signing bonus and prorate for more years than actually exists on the contract. Basically its buying on credit with the cap- buy now and pay later.

Because this deals with Brady and the Patriots and there has always been this feeling that those two work hand in hand to gain an edge some are wondering if this is some sneaky Patriots shenanigans, but this is a common thing in the NFL. In fact teams like the Eagles and Saints live by using voidable contract years for many of their players.

The reason New England needed to use this with Brady is because they were not going to have the cap room to give Brady a raise. Did they have to give Brady a raise? No, but last year Brady was unhappy with his $15 million salary and they added incentives to earn another $5 million so it would make sense that the two sides would do a new deal since he was playing on the same $15 million salary this year.

The Patriots had in the ballpark of $7.5 million in cap room before the new deal with Brady which obviously is not enough to give Brady a straight raise. Even a moderate raise would run them so close to the cap limit once they go to a regular season accounting system so they had to find a way to reduce Brady’s cap charge while giving him a raise.

By my calculations the Patriots likely gave Brady a $20.25 million bonus and reduced his base salary from $15 to $2.75 million. They will now get to prorate that $20.25 million over three seasons ($6.75M a season) rather than take the hit all this year, lowering his cap hit by $5.5 million even though they increased his compensation. By lowering his cap figure it technically also would have made it even easier for the Patriots to franchise tag him after the year, hence the no tag provision in the contract.

Here is how the cap charges work out on this contract with a void and without a void.

Year Void Contract Non-Void Contract
2019 $21,500,000 $35,000,000
2020 $6,750,000 $0
2021 $6,750,000 $0

So as you can see it’s a pretty big swing in cap room for 2019 by using the void. In both cases they have to account for $35 million on the cap its just the timing that the void changes.

The way the contract will work is as follows. Brady will play with the Patriots this season just as he would have had there been no raise. The Patriots and Brady as the season plays out can work on an extension that would keep Brady as a Patriot. The two sides have until the day before free agency begins in 2020 to sign an extension. If they sign a new deal before that date Brady will have to account for $6.75 million in proration from the $20.25 million bonus in 2020 and 2021.

If Brady and the Patriots fail to reach a new agreement by that date Brady’s remaining two contract years will void and he becomes a free agent. If that happens, Brady’s $6.75 million proration from 2021 will accelerate into 2020, meaning the team would need to account for $13.5 million in cap charges next year just from this contract. Nothing would prohibit Brady from signing back with the Patriots after the contract voids but the Patriots would have to account for that added $6.75 million on the cap in addition to any new salary.

Void years are not really a bad thing if used properly. The big downside is when you use the void years well beyond what is the expected playing time for a player you are setting yourself up for a massive cap charge down the line for a player not on the team. I guess you can argue that if a Brady or a Drew Brees retires you are going to go into such a deep rebuilding mode than it doesn’t matter what the cap charge is since you are pulling back and don’t care about the cap but teams that use it for multiple players can waste valuable space if they don’t have any intention of bringing the player back.

From a quick glance at this deal my guess is the Patriots are internally thinking Brady will likely be a starter for at least 2019 and 2020 and perhaps 2021. $13.5 million in dead money next year would not be a killer if things really went south and $6.75 million in 2021 is certainly manageable. In that respect this is better than the Brees contract where voids were not staggered as well and would cost the Saints over $20 million if he retired after this season.

But the real gist of the contract is that the Patriots were doing a raise for Brady and this was the way they could do it from a cap perspective. Given Brady’s age its easier to work year by year than negotiating a long term deal and most likely they agree on a new one year deal in February and keep going and going in that manner until Brady one day shows his age.

 

https://overthecap.com/tom-brady-and-voidable-contract-years/amp/

 

1 hour ago, athell said:

I wish folks would spend more time learning how things work and less time complaining about those things they don't understand lol

Yeah. But it doesn’t fit their agenda. Tanker boys love mock drafts and rebuilding every year. Or the agenda Is to get rid of a player. 

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43 minutes ago, falcons007 said:

And people still don’t know the difference between cap and paid.

 

Jake Mathews pay/deal is 11th for LT. Mathews averages 14.5 M a year and top LT is 23 M. Not even top 10 Paid at this point.

https://overthecap.com/position/left-tackle/
 

Like I've already told you countless times, nobody cares about anything but the cap, and Jake Matthews having the largest cap hit of any OT in the league in 2021 is a joke.

 

At some point, you have to admit that money has been poorly spent on this team, and it aint all on the nickel and dime pieces.

Edited by Snafu
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6 minutes ago, Snafu said:

Like I've already told you countless times, nobody cares about anything but the cap, and Jake Matthews having the largest cap hit of any OT in the league in 2021 is a joke.

 

At some point, you have to admit that money has been poorly spent on this team, and it aint all on the nickel and dime pieces.

Lol. Restructure Mathews and the cap goes lower. It’s not very hard to understand. Cap is an arbitrary number, not the total pay. Total pay can stay same, just convert the part salary to bonus. 
Just say you don’t like Mathews, I can respect that opinion.

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2 hours ago, kiwifalcon said:

See this we are in jail bit with no room to manoeuvre is the biggest load of horse manure spread on these boards.When in all actual fact there are boat loads of options.

The contracts given were no doubt built on the projections of the cap increases that would have happend less COVID.

Thee only real spanner in the works is the latter mentioned and the guys responsible for the cap basically have to earn there cash and have every scenario covered.

Say what....the cap don’t matter. Okay 

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