June 2nd has finally arrived which means the accounting rules change for the remainder of the NFL season. The NFL calendar, for accounting purposes, is essentially split into two seasons. The first runs through June 1st. During that time any future prorated money is accelerated into the current year (2018) when a player is released. The second runs from June 2 to the end of the league year. During this time any player released will have any future prorated money accelerate into the next year (2019). What that means is that unless a player has guaranteed money in his contract any player released from a multi year contract will create more cap space than they would have yesterday.
A few teams used a special rule that allows you to designate a player a post June 1 cut before June 1. The caveat is that the team has to carry the full cap charge until June 1. Now that we are at June 2, those teams will gain some much needed cap space. The following teams are the ones who gained cap room.
Dolphins– Miami gains a whopping $17 million in room with Ndamukong Suh coming off the books. They wasted no time putting it to use, signing cornerback Bobby McCain to a four year contract extension and finalizing their contract with first round draft pick Minkah Fitzpatrick. Though we dont yet have the details on McCain’s contract the Dolphins are likely around $10 or $11 million in cap room now, most of which should be saved for the season.
Eagles– The Eagles gain $6 million in cap space with the dropping of Mychal Kendricks from the books. This was some much needed cap relief for them as well as they were right up on the cap with around $100,000 in cap room before this. The Eagles are done with their draft class already so expect them to save the $6M in room just to function this year without having to restructure any more contracts.
Falcons– Atlanta used the June 1 on tight end Levine Toilolo just one year after signing him to a three year, $12 million contract. The Falcons gained $3.5 million to bring them to around $6.5 million in cap room. They will lose $1.5 million in cap space when they sign Calvin Ridley, but that should still be enough to be worry free through the year unless they have to do something with Julio Jones’ contract that increases his cap charge.
Cowboys– The removal of Orlando Scandrick from the books saved Dallas $3 million on the cap. Dallas’ cap is ok with around $11 million in room. Had they known previously that Jason Witten would retire and that they were 100% cutting Dez Bryant they may not have used the June 1 on Scandrick.
Saints– The Saints picked up $3 million with Coby Fleener being cut. Fleener did have a $6.4 million salary but $3.4 million of that became guaranteed when an injury prevented the Saints from cutting him in February. Still $3 million is a good number and they needed it. The Saints now sit around $4 million in room but that includes their entire rookie class. This should be enough to function for the season.
Jason is the founder of OTC and has been studying NFL contracts and the salary cap for over 15 years. Jason has co-authored two books about the NFL, Crunching Numbers and the Drafting Stage, which are widely circulated in the industry and hosts the OTC Podcast. Jason’s work has been featured in various publications including the Sporting News, Sports Illustrated, NFL Network and more. OTC is widely considered the leading authority on contract matters in the NFL.