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Bengals 2015 salary cap breakdown favors defense

If we combine the cap number for each position and split them across the offense, defense and special teams, Cincinnati's defense commands more than 54 percent of the team's salary cap.

Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports

It's clear Cincinnati has invested steady cash from a defensive point of view; four of the top five highest cap numbers collectively belong to positions on defense (cornerback, defensive tackle, outside linebacker and defensive end). Wide receiver (aka, A.J. Green's salary) is the only position on offense with a cap number in Cincinnati's top-five. The Bengals have been more inclined to sign defensive players to long-term deals, like Geno Atkins, Carlos Dunlap, Vontaze Burfict and Leon Hall, while offering intermediate raises to guys like Wallace Gilberry, Adam Jones, Reggie Nelson and even Domata Peko.

If we combine the cap number for each position and split them across the offense, defense and special teams, Cincinnati's defense commands more than 54 percent of the team's salary cap.

pct of cap

Yet, it's not hard to realize why this is both expected and natural. Wide receivers A.J. Green, Mohamed Sanu and Marvin Jones, running backs Giovani Bernard and Jeremy Hill and tight end Tyler Eifert are still on their first contract; these players have favorable opportunities to receive long-term deals to eventually balance the team's cap -- if not favor the offense (especially with so many defensive players projected to hit free agency next season).

It's not to say that the offense has been ignored, evident by recent long-term deals with Andy Dalton and Clint Boling, while Andrew Whitworth and Andre Smith have each received raises. Yet the timing favored deals with the defense because so many offensive players are still on their first contract.

Either way, this shares an interesting, if not completely expected, look at the team's cap breakdown.