It's happening and...IT'S GOOD FOR US.
Something BIG is happening with the NFL CAP. It is not just a minor adjustment, it is the beginning of a CAP revolution.
Background – The CAP was set 20 years with 2 main purposes –
Enhance the competition since a fixed cap does not allow the check book size to dictate your roster.
Ensure the profit for team owners who are protected from excess spending.
Obviously the CAP made life harder for players who could no longer get all they wanted.
The result was the CBA. The idea behind the CBA was to limit the amounts that rookie players demanded to sign with the teams picking them so there will be more money to pay proven veterans rather then spend a lot on unknown talent. That worked partially. High priced superstars, QBs etc. still got their lucrative contracts but for the rest of the veterans it didn't prove to be working. Teams preferred to based the roster on a lot of young players under rookie contracts and the FA market was very dry for most players that are not tier 1 superstars.
It became abundantly clear very quickly that the Mannings and Falccos, the Raviss, C.J. and V.J. will keep getting their big paydays but the Avrils and Bennetts were not having a field day.
Anyone following the struggles of the Seahawks managing their roster to fit under the CAP can see that more players are being released rather then paid to continue.
All in all, the CAP was not enough for teams to pay 2nd tier veterans and anyone bellow 2nd tier were left looking for minimum veteran contracts. (See McDaniel and McDonald)
Something had to change and it is changing. The cap estimates until a few weeks ago were for a modest rase from 123M to 126M. In the past few weeks we see a rapid rise in cap estimates first to 128M then to 130M and now we hear that it would probably exceed 132M by possibly a few millions.
It was also mentioned that this spike from 123M to 135M will probably be repeated next year bringing the CAP to almost 150M.
This is nothing short of revolutionary. 12M pays for Bennett and Tate. It's HUGE.
It's huge for every team in the NFL but the team that would benefit the most from it is the SB champions that can keep most of their superior key personal.
The future estimates make the forecast for next year with Avril, Smith, K.J. and Maxwell becoming free agents and RW, Wagner eligible for extension more manageable.
Some may say that now every team in the league can start hunting for Seahawks players and that would affect their price. It's true. Every player in the open market sees dollar signs. It will affect prices for all players. Some teams may use it to have one more impact player at a higher premium and some teams would rather get 2-3 vets at a reasonable cost. Yes, it will most likely make negotiations with our players a bit harder but we have an advantage. We are focused on a few players, our players, not working the whole FA market. If it means paying a million or two more then what we hopped for it still means one more player then with the 126M cap. There are a lot of FA players out there, each hoping for his extra million. A lot may get it. There are many players nearing the end of their rookie contract whose agents just added a million to their price. When all is said and done this extra cap space will be spread over hundreds of players adding a million here and a million there. A few will get that great bank breaker deal they wouldn't get otherwise, very few. Looking at our little pond – it's better to pay that extra mil for 3-4 players you want to keep out of 12M extra budget then lose one of them right now because you can't afford them.
In a year or two the new CAP will be distributed one way or another and all teams will pay thier players according to the market's supply and demand forces. There is only one SB champion team that gets to keep the best team in football this year practically intact. The team is....US.
The revolution couldn't have started at a better time for our Hawks.
Long live the Lombardi on our shelf.