Along with the league's surprising punishment against teams like the Dallas Cowboys and Washington Redskins, giving teams an additional $1.6 million of space against the cap, the Bengals had roughly $51.5 million available against the 2012 salary cap. Later that day the Cincinnati Bengals announced the signings of Chris Pressley's two-year contract, along with signed contracts with exclusive-rights free agents, such as running back Cedric Peerman, defensive tackle Nick Hayden and linebacker Vincent Rey to one-year deals worth the league minimum. What does that mean for the team's salary cap?
Tampa Bay, Cincinnati and Denver have most cap room. Tampa Bay is about $44 million under cap, Cincinnati $41 million, Denver $38 million.
We have a hard time believing that contracts for Pressley, Peerman, Hayden and Rey would generate that much of a combined hit against the cap -- though we don't know Pressley's numbers yet. Additionally Mike Nugent's franchise tag shouldn't have been taken into account because he has yet to sign his one-year deal, though Schefter (or his source) could be applying it as an eventuality, despite the fact Cincinnati could still sign Nugent to a multi-year deal.