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Quick overview of the Seahawks salary cap situation for 2019

Wild Card Round - Detroit Lions v Seattle Seahawks Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images

Following the release of long time members of the Seattle Seahawks Doug Baldwin and Kam Chancellor, I looked at the impact on the salary cap for both this season and next. Since the release of those two on Thursday, the team has made official the signing of defensive end Ziggy Ansah and also reportedly added run stuffing defensive tackle Al Woods. So, while we don’t have the full information on Ansah’s contract at this time, we can ballpark the numbers until the final numbers become known.

As of right now, lists the Seahawks as having $33,044,068 in cap space for 2019, while the NFLPA public salary cap report lists the team as having $33,674,826. Both of those are within the same ballpark, so I’ll simply use $33M and call it good.

The first thing to account for is the team’s draft picks. While the Hawks have signed four picks (Marquise Blair, Phil Haynes, Ugo Amadi and Ben Burr-Kirven), the seven other picks remain unsigned. Based on the projected first year cap hits from OTC for the slots in which those players were drafted, these are the numbers I will use for now when projecting their 2019 cap hits.

  • L.J. Collier: $1,970,197
  • DK Metcalf: $833,828
  • Cody Barton: $716031
  • Gary Jennings: $673,414
  • Travis Homer: $530,839
  • Demarcus Christmas: $526,958
  • John Ursua: $515,668

The next step is to figure out which of those are even relevant. During the offseason, only the players with the 51 highest cap hits count against the salary cap, and according to OTC that cutoff is at $610,510. However, that does not yet account for the three veteran players the Hawks signed on Thursday in Jamar Taylor, Nick Bellore and Marcus Martin. Those three players all have enough accrued seasons in the NFL that their minimum salary contracts will carry cap hits higher than that $610,510 threshold, so we’ll need to bump the cutoff up three spots. That moves the cutoff to $645,00, and allows us to immediately ignore the cap hits of Ursua, Christmas and Home.

There’s no need to further confuse anyone with the specifics of the math, which I’ve already done, but signing Collier, Metcalf, Barton and Jennings will require roughly another $1.613M in cap space.

Next we can go ahead and figure in the two recent additions in Ansah and Woods. We don’t know the specifics of Ansah’s contract, however, it sounds like he’ll carry a $9M cap hit to start 2019, so that’s what we’ll use. Reports on Woods have him signing for $2.25M. Adding those two cap hits together and then subtracting out the contracts that they would be replacing in the top 51 cap hits uses another $9.955M

Thus, subtracting the amounts necessary to sign the draft picks and the two recent additions from the $33M in cap space we started with, it yields $21.43M in available space. That number is before accounting for the practice squad and injured reserve, which will require $1.36M and around $3M. Lastly, it’s also necessary to account for the $1.2M in potential injury protection payments for which Baldwin could qualify for after having been released with a failed physical designation. Deducting all those eaves the team with somewhere just under $16M in available cap space.

Some of that space will likely be used on extensions for Bobby Wagner and Jarran Reed, and potentially on Germain Ifedi as well. Obviously there’s a lot of time between now and the start of training camp, so we’ll have to wait and see how exactly the team decides that cap space can be best put to use.