As some of you know I have been extremely worried about the cap and what it means for the future; both near and short term. Using the overthecap.com calculator I think I have figured out a way to get 10.3 mil under the cap for this year without doing more destruction to future years than necessary.
None of it is pretty and we will need to replace some depth. We will also be relying on a healthy and productive Romo through at least 2017 and possibly even 2018 but we are already relying on that anyway.
There are a group of players we have hitched our wagon to and they are going to be here for a while. Romo, Carr, Witten, Lee and Scandrick are the core of our future based on the cap. Tron and possibly Dez will be added to the list when and if they receive new contracts
How to get under the cap by 10.3 mil.
First no FA's can be resigned.
Cuts that do little damage to the future by not having a lot of dead money.
Parnell, Costa, Durant, Brown, Irvin, Clutts, Kearse
Post June 1st cuts that leave dead money beyond this year.
Austin and Ware.
Both leave significant dead money into 2015 but neither give the cap relief needed without designating them post june 1st cuts.
Restructured contracts. There are a few options. The most likely candidates are Romo, Carr, Witten, Lee and Scandrick.
I used Romo because his contract was clearly written to be restructured and Scandrick because of Lees injury history and Carr's contract is already bloated and left Witten as a future restructure if needed.
These moves put us 10.3 mil under the cap of 127.9 mil and 9.7 mil under the 2015 cap of 126.95 mil with hopefully an increase in the cap in 2015 plus some remaining contracts that could be restructured in 2015.
This leaves some holes. Most importantly Ware needs to be replaced. Austins replacement should be easier. Also lots of depth is needed. Especially on the lines and with Simms not resigned and Durrant cut LB needs to be addressed.
It's fun playing GM and tinkering with the cap figures but I mostly worry about Romo and Carr's contracts going forward. I hope both can stay healthy and play at a high level. Lees injury problems also are worrisome as he is a big cap hit going forward as well.
I considered cutting Orton but with Romo's back and his cut not making a huge difference I decided to keep him one more year. The contract that surprises me and I don't worry too much about is Wittens. As long as he remains productive through 2016 it will be good.
I have heard 10 mil under is what we need to sign the rookie class and bring in low priced depth so that is what I aimed for.
Under this scenario and with an eye towards addressing future moves like cutting Orton next year and finding a possible replacement for Murray, I submit the following mock.
Positions that need immediate attention. DEX2, DTX2, OL depth, LBX2,
Positions that could use attention but are not as dire. FS, WR, RB, QB to groom.
Position that would like to see upgrades but can't. CB The contracts of Carr, Scandrick and Claiborne make them unable to be cut. Webb and Moore make decent depth. Possible late round pick or UDFA to add to the mix.
1. Kony Ealy DE
2. Will Sutton DT
3. Dominique Easley DT
4. Christian Kirksey OLB
5. Chris Watt OG
7. Will Clarke DE
7. Cornelius Lucas RT
7. Greg Blair ILB
7. Antonio Andrews RB
7. John Urschel OG
7. James Morris LB
7. Tevin Reese WR
Charles Leno LT, Jay Bromley DT, Chris Coyle FB, Nickoe Whitley FS, Torin Harris CB, Pat Odonnell P