Ketchman: Projecting Detroit's Salary Cap

How much the Lions will spend, how much they'll have left over, and who costs what after the team decides its 2008 roster. Resident capologist George Ketchman breaks it all down.

SALARY CAP BREAKDOWN
(after projected roster cuts)

Based on Nate's Projected Roster, the Lions would have $90,761,300 in 53 active players and 2 Injured Reserves, broken down as follows:

  • (3) Quarterbacks - $7,600,440
  • (5) Wide Receivers - $14,816,431
  • (3) Running Backs - $2,750,970
  • (4) Full Backs/Tight Ends - $4,818,787
  • (9) Offensive Linemen - $16,915,056
  • (5) Defensive Ends - $7,666,493
  • (5) Defensive Tackles - $9,897,453 (1 IR)
  • (5) Corner Backs - $9,528,933 (1 IR)
  • (5) Safeties - $5,395,517
  • (6) Linebackers - $7,269,393
  • (3) ST Players - $4,101,827

    The Lions would have $17,320,947 of 2008 Dead Cap broken down as follows:

  • April 9th blog entry - $15,192,000
  • Additional accumulated through the Summer - $657,500
  • Projected LB Final Cuts - $43,240
  • Projected CB Final Cuts - $12,000
  • Projected DE Final Cuts - $15,440
  • Projected DT Final Cuts - $14,700
  • Projected RB Final Cuts - $50,080
  • Projected FB/TE Final Cuts - $1,213,440
  • Projected WR Final Cuts - $113,827
  • Projected OL Final Cuts - $8,720
  • Active Player Costs - $90,761,300 (from above)
  • Dead Cap - $17,320,947 (from above)
  • Cap Adjustments - $5,348,065 (March 1st Blog Entry)
  • Practice Squad - $707,200 (8 players @5200 per week over 17 weeks)

    The Total Salary Cap for the year is $116,729,000 and based on Nate's Projected Roster, I'd guesstimate that the Lions would have spent $114,137,512 of Cap space and thus have $2,591,488 available entering the season.

(Editor's Note: I recently wrote two pieces projecting Detroit's 2008 roster (offense and defense). Resident capologist George Ketchman has broken down the Detroit Lions salary cap situation *by position* based on those projections. He also adds the cap hit that the team would take from each player if by some chance my projection is a bit ... off. Regardless, below is as accurate a depiction and explanation as you'll find anywhere on the internet. // NC)

Training Camp Battles (Special Teams) - Cap Perspective:

Nate's projected Roster has no surprises on Special Teams. The ST Unit will count $4,101,827.

ST's Current Year Cap Charge:

 ST's 2008 Dead Cap if Traded or Released:

  • Jason Hanson - $436,720
  • Nick Harris - $348,387
  • Don Mulbach - $51,053

Training Camp Battles (Linebackers) - Cap Perspective:

Based on Nate's Projected Defensive Roster, the Lions would have $7,269,393 in the six LB's with an additional $43,240 of Dead Cap from the release of other LB's.

LB's Current Year Cap Cost:

LB's 2008 Dead Cap if Traded or Released:

  • Ernie Sims - $1,890,000
  • Paris Lenon - $750,000
  • Alex Lewis - $456,720
  • Jordon Dizon - $350,000
  • Gilbert Gardner - $41,240
  • Anthony Cannon - $15,953
  • Buster Davis - $6,720
  • Tyrone Pruitt - $2,000
  • Leon Joe - $0
  • Darnell Bing $0

Training Camp Battles (Defensive Backs) - Cap Perspective:

Based on Nate's Projected Defensive Roster, the Lions would have five CB's and five S's. The five CB's plus Wilson (IR) would count $9,528,933 with an additional $12,000 of Dead Cap. The Safeties would cost $5,395,517 with no dead cap implications.

CB's Current Year Cap Charge:

CB's 2008 Dead Cap if Traded or Released:

  • Brian Kelly - $1,090,053
  • Travis Fisher - $1,006,720
  • Keith Smith - $1,006,720
  • Leigh Bodden - $340,053
  • Stanley Wilson - $933,720 **
  • DeVonte Edwards - $6,720
  • Ramzee Robinson - $6,720
  • LaMarcus Hicks - $5,280

S's Current Year Cap Charge:

S's 2008 Dead Cap if Traded or Released:

  • Kalvin Pearson - $1,046,720
  • Dwight Smith - $656,720
  • Daniel Bullocks - $497,970
  • Gerald Alexander - $201,720
  • Greg Blue - $6,720
  • Stephen Howell - $0

(Note: Stanley Wilson was placed on IR after being injured during the first preseason game. When a football injury occurs while on the roster, the base salary is guaranteed to be paid for the year. At some point, the Lions may reach a settlement with Wilson for a lesser amount, but they are currently on the hook for his current year base salary.)

Training Camp Battles (Defensive Line) - Cap Perspective:

Based on Nate's Projected Defensive Roster, the Lions will have $7,666,493 of cap charges invested in five total DE's and will incur an additional $15,440 of Dead Cap associated with the release of three DE's. At DT, the Lions will have five players accounting for $9,897,453 of cap space and will have an additional $14,700 of dead cap from the release of one DT.

DE's Current Year Cap Charges:

DE's 2008 Dead Cap if Traded or Released:

  • Dewayne White - $3,355,470
  • Jared DeVries - $356,720
  • Corey Smith - $106,720
  • Ikaika Alama-Francis - $216,720
  • Cliff Avril - $161,333
  • Victor DeGrate - 6,720
  • Claude Harriot - $6,720
  • Ruldolph Hardie - $2,000

DT's Current Year Cap Charges:*

DT's 2008 Dead Cap if Traded or Released:

  • Cory Redding - $2,083,333
  • Chuck Darby - $1,465,000
  • Shaun Cody - $600,000
  • Shemiah Legrande - $200,000 **
  • Andre Fluellen - $170,400
  • Landon Cohen - $14,700
  • Langston Moore - $6,720
  • Tatum Bell - $1,600,000
  • Brian Calhoun - $639,970
  • Kevin Smith - $511,000
  • Aveion Cason - $491,720
  • Artose Pinner - $448,360

RB's 2008 Dead Cap if Traded or Released:

  • Tatum Bell - $300,000
  • Kevin Smith - $216,000
  • Aveion Cason - $46,720
  • Brian Calhoun - $6,720
  • Artose Pinner - $3,360

FB & TE Current Year Cap Charge:

FB & TE Dead Cap if Released or Traded:

  • Michael Gaines - $1,206,720
  • Dan Campbell - $515,000
  • Casey Fitzsimmons - $395,000
  • Jon Bradley - $91,667
  • Jerome Felton - $45,400
  • Sean McHugh - $6,720

Based on Nate's Projected Roster, the Lions will have 24 players on offense counting for $46,901,684 of cap space. Additional cuts will yield an additional $1,386,067 of Dead Cap.

  • (3) Quarterbacks - $7,600,440
  • (5) Wide Receivers - $14,816,431
  • (3) Running Backs - $2,750,970
  • (4) Full Backs/Tight Ends - $4,818,787
  • (9) Offensive Linemen - $16,915,056

Training Camp Battles (QB & WR) - Cap Perspective:

Based on Nate's Projected Roster, the Lions will have $7,600,440 of Cap Charges in 3 QB's. At Wide Receiver, the Lions would have $14,816,431 tide up in 5 players with an additional $113,827 of Dead Cap.

QB's Current Year Cap Charges:

QB's 2008 Dead Cap if Traded or Released:

  • Jon Kitna - $1,925,000
  • Drew Stanton - $421,720
  • Dan Orlovsky - $6,720

WR's Current Year Cap Charges:

WR's 2008 Dead Cap if Traded or Released:

  • Roy Williams - $2,568,333
  • Calvin Johnson - $1,606,720
  • Mike Furrey - $1,200,000
  • Shaun McDonald - $681,720
  • Kenneth Moore - $93,667
  • DeVale Ellis - $6,720
  • Ronald Bellamy - $6,720
  • Brandon Middleton - $6,720
  • John Standeford - $6,720

Other Cap Notes:

Takeo Spikes - According to Rotoworld, Spikes signed a one year contract for $1.48M that includes a $300,000 Signing Bonus, contains a $140,000 Roster Bonus and a $1,040,000 Base Salary. An additional $200,000 can be earned through incentives.

It's not a lot and the Lions reportedly offered him $1.5M, it looks like it was a matter of Spikes choosing San Francisco over Detroit. Contrary to what the local media may report, it looks like the salary cap didn't have anything to do with salary cap limitations and had to do more with Spikes choosing San Francisco over Detroit.

Nick Jones and Eddie Johnson were both released on August 9th. There release will have no effect on the Lions current cap status.

Dave Rayner signed for the league minimum for players with 3 years of service, $520,000 and his current year player cost is $520,000. His player cost will figure into the Top 51 Calculation and reduce the Lions Cap Status by about $60,000.

Damion Cook signed for $605,000, the league minimum for players with 4 years of service. The NFLPA will subsidize $160,000 of his salary and Cook's current year player cost will be $445,000.

Kiwaukee Thomas, an 8 year veteran signed for the league minimum $730,000 and the NFLPA will subsidize $285,000 of his salary. Thomas' 2008 player cost will be $445,000.

Stanley Wilson was placed on Injured Reserve on August 11th. The move doesn't effect the Lions current cap status. His contract likely doesn't include a split salary and unless an injury settlement is reached, he'll count $933,720 against the cap.

Based on the above, the Lions are currently about $4.1M under the cap.


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