FA Rankings and Team Offseason Guides are Updated

I just wanted to bring it to everyone’s attention that we have updated some of our free agency materials for premium subscribers. Currently we have the top 60 ranked free agents. Each player has a contract projection that projects years, total value, and total guarantees that would come from comparable players, as well as a small writeup on each player. I’ll keep adding to this list over the next two weeks.

We also updated our offseason guides which have a quick overview of each team in the league. It gives a overview of where they stand with the salary cap, where they rank in free agency, what their draft situation looks like, possible cuts, current spending, and the contribution (using our OTC valuation) their current players and free agents made last year in the league. Each of these can be downloaded as a pdf. Here is a quick sample of the offensive breakdown of the Titans roster for the year.

2023 NFL Salary Cap Update

Today you may have noticed a big change on OTC with every teams salary cap number’s with most teams cap room falling by a pretty sizeable amount. The reason for the change is that we have now made the change to regular season accounting for each team which means rosters count in full, including players on reserve lists, practice squads, etc…and those numbers add up quickly.

Currently we estimate eight teams to be over the salary cap. These teams are the Chiefs, Raiders, Buccaneers, Giants, Bills, Ravens, 49ers and Broncos. The Titans are just slightly under the salary cap. All teams in the NFL have until Thursday to be compliant with the salary cap which is the day that the NFL moves off the top 51 rule. So for these teams they will need to restructure contracts, extend players for cap relief, make some injury settlements, or move players off the roster to comply with the salary cap.

The behind the scenes cap work happens quickly during this time and there will probably be a lag between when a move is made (some may have already been made) and when details of it leak out so it may take us some time to get all the teams in order but this should give you an idea of which teams to really focus on for contract news this week.

You can view each teams estimated salary cap room on our cap space page and fool around with various restructures using each teams cap calculator.

2023 NFL Team Reports

With the 2022 NFL season officially complete I uploaded offseason overviews for our premium subscribers for 30 of the 32 teams (the Eagles and Chiefs will come sometime this week). You can find them under the free agency tab in the free agency reports section.

Each team will have a breakdown of their current estimated cap situation, free agent numbers, draft status, and potential cuts and we break down the spending on offense and defense plus how we valued those units using our valuation metric (again just as a reminder the valuation metric is not a contract estimate). Finally I’ll have some thoughts on what the teams may do with their salary cap in the offseason, team needs, and a general outlook for the team.

Right now these are individual files for download but once I finalize the other two teams I will post one file containing all 32 teams so you can just download that file and have them all in one document.

If you would like to preview one of the reports here is the report for the Indianapolis Colts.

2022 Salary Cap Update

We should now have all releases and waiver claims accounted for in our salary cap estimates for the season. Most of the practice squad estimates are also in place for each team. With those finished we have switched all of our salary cap space estimates over to reflect regular season accounting.

Please note that you will see teams listed as being over the cap over the next week as teams have until September 6th to be cap compliant with their full rosters, but we wanted to jump the gun again so you have can have a better understanding of what teams may or may not have to do in the coming days with their roster.

As of today our estimates would indicate that the Giants, Jets, Patriots, Lions, and Rams all will have some work to do before next week. For teams further over the cap like the Giants it likely means contract restructures where salary cap money is deferred to 2023. For teams like the Rams it may just mean finalizing an injury settlement or making a minor tweak of a contract.

Seven teams (Eagles, Bucs, Chiefs, Vikings, Saints, Jaguars, and Titans) are going to have less than $6 million in cap space. These are teams that may opt to make a move or two just to give themselves more of a cushion to cover players landing on IR during the season, practice squad elevations, and potential in season extensions. It is often better to do that now than wait until later in the year when you may have to rush to make ends meet. This happened last year with the Giants when a rash of injuries had them restructuring contracts where they could only pick up a handful of dollars because it was so late in the year.

The 2023 cap space estimates do not yet include carryover estimates for next year. I will put in placeholders for those either next Wednesday or after the first week of games, which more often than not is the last day that extensions are done until later in the year. If you want a clearer picture for next year before this just add whatever cap space you see for your favorite team in 2022 and add it to the 2023 numbers.

As always thanks for the support at OTC. Feel free to email me with any corrections. They are always appreciated especially since there are bound to be a few mistakes with so many transactions over the last 48 hours.

Cutdown Day Updates

Today is always a bittersweet day as the NFL makes their cuts down to 53 players. On one hand it marks the turn into the regular season which is exciting for fans and players alike but on the other hand over one thousand players will lose their chance to play this year. A few notes on our schedule at OTC.

We won’t process cuts until they become official. Today will be loaded with news of players who are being cut, expected to be cut, and so on. Some actually wind up on IR. A few may be traded. A few are not actually cut. It is easier to just wait to process everything.

Due to the high volume of transactions expect to see some delay in updating everyone. We’ll get there by Monday for certain but expect a lot of changes over the next 48 hours.

Practice squad players will start signing tomorrow afternoon once they clear waivers. Again we will process these when official and we have completed the initial cuts. There are a lot more practice squad spots than usual so on the bright side expect more rookies than usual to get a chance at making a roster.

It is important to remember that the 53 man today is also not going to be the 53 man tomorrow. The rosters in the NFL are very fluid this time of year and really are not set until Tuesday afternoon which is the day the players earn a pay check.

Salary cap calculations change on Tuesday as well. On that day they move from the 51 man offseason system to the full roster in-season accounting system. Expect every team to lose at least $3.5 million in cap space. We will switch over to the in season system earlier than Tuesday and will put an update on the front page when we do so.

This is the last week where we usually see last minute contract changes and extensions. This take time to get information on so if you have any information to share please let me know and we will update it. Once we get the cuts all processed Ill probably also post an update on the cap numbers in place at the time.

Finally due to all the salary cap stuff going on right now the podcast will be late this week. I probably wont record until Tuesday or Wednesday night and will look at the final rosters and do some (bad) predictions for the season. So if you have any questions you can let me know.

We should have some good stuff on tap for OTC this year. We will do the weekly valuations again hopefully starting in week 1 but definitely in week 2. We should have some added materials by the end of the year in the premium section that I think you will also enjoy looking at and find useful for research too.

As always thanks for the support and continuing to use OTC.

Notes on Handling of Offseason Updates

Just wanted to post a brief update on the status of some salary cap related stuff on OTC over the next few weeks. This time of year is filled with all kinds of rumors, announcements of signings, possible trades, cuts, etc….and it always causes all kinds of confusion so here is how we plan on handling the various items in the offseason.

Potential Trades

Trades can not be processed until  the beginning of the league year so from a technical standpoint all of these players should remain on their current team until March 18th at 4PM. During the next few weeks its always possible that the trades can fall through or a new trade partner pops up essentially making the trade announcement nothing more than a fantasy. In the past trade agreements during February and March were pretty rare but it picked up steam last year and we did adjust the way we handled them last year. Provided that the trade is reported by a reputable source (Adam Schefter for example)or announced by the team we will process it within a day or two of the announcement even though we may need to revert it if the trade falls through.

Potential Cuts

There is always talk of players that are being released. We will not process any cuts unless officially announced by the team either through a press release or the official NFL transaction wire.


Retirement announcements often occur in February and March, but until these are official with the NFL we will not process these.  We will treat it this way even if the team and/or player announces it. Why?  There are cases that arise where a player realizes that retiring is not in his best financial interest and ends up not retiring. From a cap perspective teams may want to hold off on officially placing someone on a reserve list until June 2.

Rumored Signings

Unless we confirm the numbers with someone we will not process any rumored signings. We may, during free agency, put in some placeholder numbers based on reports that assign the player to the right team and put his overall reported contract numbers into our rankings, but please remember that often reported values end up very different than the actual ones so if you see numbers change over time that may be why.

Void Acceleration

Players with voids (like Tom Brady) often have cap dollars that may accelerate into 2020 if they do not sign an extension. This acceleration doesn’t happen until the first day of the league year and we will not adjust until that date. For players with voids earlier than that we will accelerate it once the void occurs and move the player from the active list to the “dead money” list. We never count fake base salaries (contracts will usually have a large salary in the contract) at any point for voidable contract years.

Declined Options

With NFL rules changes these options will likely soon come to an end, but for the next year or two they have to dealt with. The declined option, despite the nicer sounding words associated with it, is nothing more than a cut. The only difference is that the player wont be free until the start of free agency. As long as the news of the declined option comes from a reputable source we will process this as a cut,

Because of the difference in the way we will be treating this versus how others will and specifically how the NFL will when you see wild differences between reported numbers this is likely a main reason why. Also remember that things are always very fluid this time of year and while we do our best to keep up with contract announcements and details there is always going to be some lag especially with new rules possibly in place this year. So just stick with us while we get it all sorted out.

Thanks as always for making OTC a small part of your football world and lets get ready for another wild free agency period.