The salary cap and the numbers and lingo attached to it can be tricky for a lot of fans in the NFL. It seems like there are always questions pertaining to the cap and the information available can be sparse, even with advent of the internet. So, I thought I would start a Fanpost here to answer any questions about the Salary Cap. Please check out overthecap as they have all the players salaries and cap numbers in detail.
I posted this in a comment thread earlier and so I'll just paste it here as it pertains to our Bills and their Cap situation:
The cap is estimated to be $126 million for this year but you might see that number slide up a bit when the final determination is made. Players making less than the top 51 players do not count towards the cap in the off-season. Currently, the top 51 players on the Bills roster account for roughly $113 million. The Bills also have roughly $12 million in dead money. Add the two together and you got $125 million. Teams are allowed to carryover unused cap space from year to year. Exact numbers have yet to be released but the Bills should be expecting to carryover roughly $18 million. So, the Bills will have roughly $19 million in cap space, this year as it stands now. There are some guys like Pears, Kolb, Legursky among others who could be cut, which would free up significant cap space. Then you also need to consider that rookies need money too. Last year, our rookies added roughly $2.5 million to our cap.
Looking ahead, in 2015, the Bills currently have no dead money ( although when you start cutting people, you typically create dead money). Also, the Bills have 44 players signed through 2015 and account for $87 million against the cap. So, as it stands now and if the cap were to remain at $126 million ( which it most likely won’t as it usually goes up every year) the Bills have $39 million in cap space in 2015.
Put into a formula, you have this:
NFL Salary Cap ($126.3 million) + 2013 Cap Carryover ( $18.1 million ) = 2014 Adjusted Salary cap ($144.4 million)
Adjusted Salary Cap ($144.4 million) – Top 51 ($113 million) – Dead Money ($12 million) = Bills Cap Space ( $19.4 million)
I hope all of that gives everyone a good idea of the Cap and the Bills situation. Feel free to ask any questions below and I hope to be able to provide you with an accurate reply! Thanks for reading! Go Bills!