After months of speculation, the NFL salary cap has officially been set at $182.5 million. The announcement comes a day after many teams utilized the franchise tag and several players had already been released or had their contracts restructured.
Teams are now being informed: The cap is $182.5M.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 10, 2021
Last Summer, the NFL and NFLPA agreed to a minimum floor of $175m, but the floor was raised to $180m in February. The final number was expected to end up between the new $180m floor and as high as $185m, so $182.5m lands right in the middle.
This is the first time the salary cap has shrunk from the previous year. The 2020 cap number was $198.2m and was projected to rise above $200m for the first time ever before COVID-19 impacted the league’s immediate revenue.
Many clubs will now expedite their efforts to get under their new cap floor, but the Bengals still have ample space. Cincinnati’s adjusted cap number is now at $195,138,275 after factoring in their adjusted rollover cap space from 2020.
This gives the Bengals $42,979,130 in current cap space, per overthecap.com. This is calculated via the Bengals’ $149,795,718 in top 51 cap hits in addition to their $2,363,427 in dead money, which is mostly made up of Carlos Dunlap’s remaining prorated signing bonus.
As of this posting, the Bengals have the fifth-most cap space in the league, and free agency officially begins a week from now.