The Buffalo Bills had $20.9 million in free salary cap space in 2011, according to Pro Football Talk. The same report claims that a change to the league's collective bargaining agreement could keep that money useable in the future for the Bills and other teams with cap to burn. Mike Florio explains:
Under Article 13, Section 6(b)(v) of the CBA, each team may carry over any remaining cap room from one year to the next by submitting written notice, signed by the owner of the team, to the league office no later than 14 days before the start of the next league year. The written notice must indicate the maximum amount of cap room that the team wishes to shift from one cap year to the next.
As Florio asks in this article, why wouldn't a team that wishes to be competitive carry that money over? The only answer is budgetary.
Clearly, this is a question that Bills fans will be asking clear through the end of February. Buffalo had the sixth-most free cap space in 2011. In the team's cash-to-cap philosophy, this cap space could add another free agent contract to the mix. With an extra $21 million to spend, Buffalo could add two or three years to a new Stevie Johnson deal, or perhaps cover bringing back Scott Chandler.
Teams must submit their letters by February 28. It remains to be seen if the Bills, or any team for that matter, will carry over their salary cap excess from 2011.