Just spent a couple of hours working my way through the Bengal player salaries for 2013 based on data from Rotoworld and Spotrac, and the situation looks truly exceptional for the Bengals.
Starting with players under contract that I would keep (offense and defense): *where salary not stated it's minimum as in $0.5m roughly
QB Dalton (under $1m)
RB Green-Ellis ($2.3m) and Herron
WR Green ($2.2m), Jones, Sanu and Whalen
OL Whitworth ($4.5m), Boling, Robinson, Zeitler ($0.7m), Collins ($1.8m), Wharton ($2.7m) and Cook ($2.5m - we'll keep unfortunately)
TE Gresham ($1m) and Charles
DT Atkins ($0.6m), Thompson, Still ($0.6m) and Peko (expensive at $3.7m and wouldn't mind losing, but let's keep for now)
DE Dunlap ($0.6m), Moch (as DE not LB, $0.7m) and Anderson (also expensive at $3m, but let's keep to be $ conservative)
LB Burfict and Lamur
S Nelson ($3.5m) and Iloka
CB Hall ($6.5m), Kirkpatrick ($0.7m), Prater and Ghee ($0.7m)
Now these players total about $46m in cap space.
Now adding players I think we absolutely HAVE to re-sign:
WR Hawkins - $3m a year deal (currently on less than $1m)
OL Smith - $8m a year deal
DT Sims - $1.5m a year deal (currently on less than $1m and received absolutely zero interest last year)
DE Johnson - $7m a year deal, plus Gilberry $2m a year deal (currently on less than $1m and he was off the street)
LB Howard - $2m a year deal (similar to current deal, he should feel lucky with that given injuries)
CB Jones - $3m a year deal
Re-signing these players is an additional $27m or so in cap space, making the total now $73m in cap space.
Now add special teams (Brown, Huber, Harris) and a few low-paid extras (e.g. if we keep Mays or Skuta etc) at total $10m and that puts us on $83m.
Now add draft money, say $12m in Year 1 contracts, with big round 1-2 contracts hopefully going to a LB, RB and S. Total now $95m.
Now the cap number for 2013 is $121m, but we'll be rolling over at least $10m from what I can see on the internet (probably more) so our cap number will be at least $131m.
Now let's assume we only hit $121m to give us $10m of roll-over for 2014 (Green, Dalton etc coming up in future). That means we could do this:
- Also re-sign Atkins early at $9m a year (ideally 6 year $54m deal)
- Also re-sign Dunlap early at $7m a year, just like Johnson
- And that means we can make a big-name signing in free-agency at $10m a year (I would like a star LB or S, not a WR or RB) or 2 pretty good free-agency signings at $5m each a year.
Essentially, we re-sign all the players we need to re-sign, extend Atkins and Dunlap early, get to bring in a star free-agent and still be $10m under the cap for 2014. And since we have to spend 90% of the cap from now on, Brown doesn't really have a choice!
This gets me really excited - our roster would end up:
QB Dalton and a new back-up to push him (3rd or 4th round draft pick)
RB Green-Ellis, a high (2nd round ideally) draft pick, Herron and some fillers (Peerman or Leonard, etc)
WR Green, Jones, Sanu, Whalen, Hawkins and a low-round draft pick project
OL Smith, Whitworth, Boling, Robinson, Zeitler, Collins, Wharton and Cook (unfortunately)
TE Gresham and Charles
DT Atkins, Sims, Thompson, Still and Peko (maybe)
DE Dunlap, Johnson, Gilberry, Moch, 3rd or 4th round draft pick and Anderson (maybe)
LB Burfict, 1st round draft pick, big free-agent signing, Howard, Lamur, Joiner and a filler or two
S Nelson, 2nd round draft pick, Iloka, maybe a free-agent signing and a filler or two
CB Hall, Kirkpatrick, Jones, Ghee, Prater and actually re-sign Newman cheap at $1m a year as per now (I forgot earlier)
Hope you're as excited as me after the massive frustration of yesterday!