Cap Confusion?- Here's Some Help...Hopefully

Cranx

Hammered
Joined
Feb 12, 2002
Messages
3,206
Reaction score
1
Age
45
Location
Orange County, CA
The salary cap thing is exceptionally confusing, however, the fact is that there is very little "real" money involved in the actual numbers. With a few snips here and some cuts there, the 'Fins are in a decent cap place- not great but decent.

Basically, there are two types of money in the NFL: guaranteed money and, what I like to call, “contract money.†The guaranteed money, like the name implies, is money that the player will get no matter what. In today’s NFL this usually comes in form of signing bonuses. This can also come in the form of salary money when you have a player whom the team wants to keep but who have a high cap figure. This was the case with Zack Thomas last year. They wanted to restructure his high cap-figure salary but definitely didn't want to lose him. They restructured his contract which put more money in the back end of it, but guaranteed the money in order to make it palatable to ZT. While this helped them out with the cap last year, the bill will come due later on. The ‘Fins will likely be restructuring a couple of contracts along these lines this year.

“Contract money†on the other hand is what's reported to the media and is the number we all see. This is the total amount of the contract which includes both guaranteed and potential earnings. With this money, if the player's productivity decreases, or the team just doesn’t feel that the player’s worth it-for whatever reason- the team can cut him and not have to pay him any of the remaining contract aside from unpaid signing bonus money. In this case the team will generally be charged a cap penalty but it's only money on paper and is not actually paid to anyone.

This year the Dolphins are in poor cap-condition but it’s not terrible. In a couple of seasons from now, however, our favorite team may have to pay the piper so to speak and enter into a rebuilding phase when the debts they’ve incurred come due. Hopefully the ‘Fins can avoid this through some creative accounting but if not we’ll see who the real ‘Fin-fans are.

Hopefully this will start anyone who’s interested on the road to cap understanding. There’s a lot more to it than this but these are the basic tenets of the cap. Good luck trying to figure the rest of it out.
:confused:
 

dolfan06

Super Donator
Finheaven VIP
Joined
Sep 2, 2001
Messages
13,273
Reaction score
154
Age
74
Location
FayettevilleArkansas
EXPO...............

some of that i actually understood, but i had to get out my german to english dictionary to understand the whole thing!:rolleyes:
 

Rebar71

OOPS - I did it again!
Joined
Dec 11, 2001
Messages
1,074
Reaction score
0
Age
49
Location
RSM, CA
So where does the cap figure come from?

Is it "guaranteed money" or "contract money" or something in between? Or is it something else entirely?

Sounds to me like it's all just smoke and mirrors designed to make it look like there's limitations placed on the owners; when, in reality, they can still out and do whatever the hell they feel like.
 

dolphan39

Maria & LauRen Aha!
Joined
Sep 4, 2001
Messages
13,973
Reaction score
2
Age
57
Location
CT
Originally posted by Rebar71
So where does the cap figure come from?

Is it "guaranteed money" or "contract money" or something in between? Or is it something else entirely?

Sounds to me like it's all just smoke and mirrors designed to make it look like there's limitations placed on the owners; when, in reality, they can still out and do whatever the hell they feel like.
not at all unless you believe that 72 million is too much to pay 53 guys ?

since there is revenue sharing, teams like KC and GB can spend just as much as teams like the Redskins and Jets. :cool: Compare that to baseball :eek:
 

Cranx

Hammered
Joined
Feb 12, 2002
Messages
3,206
Reaction score
1
Age
45
Location
Orange County, CA
More Please

Honestly, I don’t know exactly how they derive the cap figure, or “hit,†that a team would take if they release a player prior to the completion of their contract. Part of it has to do with length of time remaining on the contract (i.e. if a player is released after June 1st they will generally have a lower cap penalty than those released prior to that date.) Otherwise, there is a litany of factors involved. If anyone else out there has more insight into this matter please share it with the rest of us. :confused:
 

Rebar71

OOPS - I did it again!
Joined
Dec 11, 2001
Messages
1,074
Reaction score
0
Age
49
Location
RSM, CA
Originally posted by dolphan39
not at all unless you believe that 72 million is too much to pay 53 guys ?
Actually my statement is not so much about the hard figure of $72mil as it is about the "creative accounting" used to get around that number.
 

Slaine

Scout Team
Joined
Jan 8, 2002
Messages
191
Reaction score
0
Location
England
Good point - how else did Baltimore and Washington have payrolls of $99M and $103M two years ago?

They were still under the cap but they had paid through the roof for some free agents. They knew they were putting themselves in cap hell in the future but they also thought that that would give them a good chance of winning it all that year. Baltimore were right and Washington was wrong.

Washington went through their hell last year - Baltimore will go through their's this year. They are $21-23M over the cap and need to lose McCrary, Woodson, Sharpe and a bunch of others to even get close. They are praying that Houston take Jermaine Lewis and his $5M cap hit, as well as Sharper and his $3.5M cap hit.

So where does the cap figure come from?

Is it "guaranteed money" or "contract money" or something in between? Or is it something else entirely?
The cap figure that a team owes is all about guaranteed money. If you use a 5 year $25M deal including a $4M signing bonus as an example ;) , then the following cap hits apply.

The $4M bonus can be spread across all five years of the deal. This means that a team can pay an enormous bonus to sign a player (see Marcellus Wiley, Jake Plummer) and not have the whole amount of that bonus hit them in one year.

So for year one the $4M bonus counts as $800,000. You then add the players salary to that figure. In this case it's $525,000 for the 2002 season. So his total cap hit is $1.325M for 2002. Not a lot.

Now it is possible to add bonuses and performance incentives to this that are not public knowledge but essentially anytime Fiedler is paid by the team (win bonuses, TD bonuses etc) then it counts towards the cap, which is why a players cap hit at the beginning of the season is not necessarily the same at the end.

In 2003 Fielder's salary is $750,000 and he receives a roster bonus of $1.25M on March 31st. Add on the $800,000 pro-rated from this years signing bonus and again his cap hit is just over $2.8M. Still not a lot.

Now from 2004 his salary starts to look like that of a starting QB - $3.7M and the base salaries continue to escalate dramatically, to $5.775 million in 2005 and to $6.5 million in 2006. The cap hit then rises with the salary but each time adding that $0.8M to it for the pro-rated signing bonus.

BUT...

If the Dolphins choose to cut Fiedler the only guaranteed money is the signing bonus - $4M that was paid up front. So the $16M over the last three years is, in effect, contract money that Fiedler may never see.

In terms of taking a cap hit, the Dolphins would count the remainder of the $4M bonus against any future salary cap, so they could cut Fielder after two years and it will only have cost them $6.525M for their starting QB.

Now this is by no means a definitive answer as there are many other factors to take into account (for example being on the roster from June 1st has some arcane meaning that can lower cap hits - but someone better qualified will have to take you through that... :eek: ) but you can get a general idea of how cap friendly a deal is just by taking into account signing bonuses, roster bonuses and salary.

To see how friendly this contract is for the Dolphins look at Jake Plummers 4year/$25M deal including a $15M signing bonus and you can see just how different a deal can look.

HTH - perhaps someone else can factor in any of the more important points about how to work out the cap that I haven't covered...
 

dolphan39

Maria & LauRen Aha!
Joined
Sep 4, 2001
Messages
13,973
Reaction score
2
Age
57
Location
CT
Originally posted by Rebar71
Actually my statement is not so much about the hard figure of $72mil as it is about the "creative accounting" used to get around that number.
at some point you have to pay the piper though even if you get away with it for 1 or 2 years. ;)
 

Rebar71

OOPS - I did it again!
Joined
Dec 11, 2001
Messages
1,074
Reaction score
0
Age
49
Location
RSM, CA
Thanks for the breakdown, Slaine. That clears it up some. I don't envy those who's job it is to actually keep track of all that - what will now be 32 teams and 1,696 convoluted player contracts. No thanks! ;)
 

dolfan06

Super Donator
Finheaven VIP
Joined
Sep 2, 2001
Messages
13,273
Reaction score
154
Age
74
Location
FayettevilleArkansas
i still think,

Originally posted by Rebar71
Thanks for the breakdown, Slaine. That clears it up some. I don't envy those who's job it is to actually keep track of all that - what will now be 32 teams and 1,696 convoluted player contracts. No thanks! ;)
i'd rather watch the game!:stooges:
 

LeftCoastPhin

Getting geeked for 2003!!
Joined
Feb 12, 2002
Messages
1,969
Reaction score
0
Age
45
Location
Riverside, CA
How does the Salary Cap work?

Ok, when it comes to the cap I'm fairly knowledgeable but I'm still learning (i think we all are, lol) Anyway, while reading an article about our cap situation and how we must be down to "standard" by March 1st prompted this question: After March 1st, when is the next date that we must be at that Cap Level again? Or do we have to stay at that level throughtout 2002? I assume we do, otherwise teams could really load up for One Year Runs.

What prompted the question is if teams have to stay at that level throughout the year then how the heck do they get so high above the cap (22 mil for the Jags)? I assume it's because they back log contracts and bonuses but that's one heck of an discrepancy!

Anyone care to shed more light? Thanks.
 

Dajesus

Starter
Joined
Dec 12, 2001
Messages
4,542
Reaction score
739
Age
42
Location
Albany, NY
I read a great article on this the other day but I forget where. You pretty much answered all your questions, after March 1st if you are above the cap you get fined, and if it the problem continues you lose on draft choices. The 49ers got some taken away this year. The other questinon you were right. By turning parts of salary in to roster bonus teams can back load contracts to take the hit the following year, or just make the salary the following year bigger and reduce the salary of the current year. That is why Bowens, and Marion's futures are in question w/miami.
 

LeftCoastPhin

Getting geeked for 2003!!
Joined
Feb 12, 2002
Messages
1,969
Reaction score
0
Age
45
Location
Riverside, CA
Thanks! There are just so many dynamics to the cap sometimes it gets confusing. I was thinking "what's stopping teams from just going for it" but fines and losing draft picks are definately good deterrents. I forgot about the 9ers getting nailed, I knew there had to be some penalty.



LMAO at the Jag-u-wires! Anyone think WE have problems? Now there is a team that has hard times! All that cap manuerving and where did it get them? I'm one of the people that agrees with what the 49ers and Cowboys did because they won Super Bowls and it's worth what happened to them. But for every Cowboy and 49er teams there are teams like the Deadskins and Jag-u-wires that failed miserablely at cap roulette and now they are in deep sh*t!!!!

Let's stay the course Dolphin fans, we will get there someday!
 

Dajesus

Starter
Joined
Dec 12, 2001
Messages
4,542
Reaction score
739
Age
42
Location
Albany, NY
The funny thing is they could have dumped all their cap problems last season, and rebuild this year, but for some reason they thought they had a chance last year. Can you imagine the draft picks they would have gotten last year for Bosselli, Taylor, and Mckardell last year. They kept all they all got injured, and will probably all be given away this year.
 
Top Bottom