All-32 view of salary cap: Commanders flush with cash, Bills bottom out

By Thomson Reuters Feb 23, 2024 | 3:49 PM

Washington leads the NFL with $96.4 million of salary-cap space two weeks before the start of free agency, while the Buffalo Bills are bailing water in cap hell with painful personnel decisions looming.

The Bills and Saints are among teams spared by a massive increase of more than $30 million per team from the 2023 cap limit, which was confirmed at $255.4 million per team for 2024 by the NFL on Friday. The cap counts the top 51 player contracts on the 53-man roster.

Spotrac projects the Commanders to lead the NFL in cap space at $96,443,548 million, but Washington has only 44 players under contract for next season and will owe approximately $35 million guaranteed on a four-year deal to the No. 2 pick in the NFL draft.

The Patriots stand close behind at $86 million with 53 players under contract. New England also has a significant draft pick pool to set aside with the No. 3 pick in the 2024 draft.

Tennessee ($85.2 million), Chicago ($82.9 million), Indianapolis ($74.4 million) and Cincinnati ($74.3 million) are in the top six in available cap space of February 23. But the Bears are likely to commit a significant chunk of change to pending free agent cornerback Jaylon Johnson, and big-ticket free agents are priorities for the Colts (wide receiver Michael Pittman Jr.) and Bengals (wide receiver Tee Higgins). All three players are candidates for the franchise tag.

The Saints were bringing up the rear with a whopping $321 million committed to the 2024 roster, an excess of $74.7 million, until the NFL released the new cap figures on Friday.

Their ledger updates officially at 4 p.m. ET on Friday when moves are tabulated for accounting purposes by NFL protocol. That includes the Saints converting quarterback Derek Carr’s scheduled $30 million salary for next season to a bonus payment of more than $28.3 million.

Buffalo is $43.7 million over, and the Saints are now working to reduce their excess of $42 million.

The Dolphins are $24.6 million in the red. The Chargers are one spot ahead of Miami in available money but deep in negative because of an NFL-worst $24.5 million in “dead cap”

Here’s a rundown of salary cap available — spending committed to top 51 player contracts for 2024 minus $255.4 million limit — as of February 23 according to Spotrac:

1 Wash. Commanders $96,443,548

2 NE Patriots $86,806,052

3 Tennessee Titans $85,215,424

4 Chicago Bears $82,943,701

5 Indianapolis Colts $79,250,395

6 Cincinnati Bengals $74,279,511

7 Houston Texans $73,950,247

8 Detroit Lions $65,727,906

9 Arizona Cardinals $57,539,440

10 Las Vegas Raiders $55,476,342

11 Los Angeles Rams $52,345,058

12 TB Buccaneers $48,162,193

13 Carolina Panthers $42,870,624

14 Atlanta Falcons $41,992,153

15 Minnesota Vikings $40,968,007

16 New York Giants $38,916,449

17 Philadelphia Eagles $32,473,778

18 Jacksonville Jaguars $30,147,209

19 Kansas City Chiefs $28,279,105

20 New York Jets $20,462,303

21 Seattle Seahawks $16,105,973

22 Green Bay Packers $12,454,745

23 Baltimore Ravens $12,078,444

24 Pittsburgh Steelers $8,474,099

25 San Francisco 49ers $4,625,837

26 Dallas Cowboys -$3,228,985)

27 Cleveland Browns -$7,721,189)

28 Denver Broncos -$13,022,601)

29 LA Chargers -$20,833,735)

30 Miami Dolphins -$24,636,557)

31 New Orleans Saints -$38,842,847)

32 Buffalo Bills -$41,316,834)

–Field Level Media