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KC_Guy


Joined: 07 Jan 2008
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Location: Brussels, Belgium
PostPosted: Sun Jul 07, 2013 2:08 pm    Post subject: The cap issue is back ... Reply with quote

Here's a pretty nice piece on the current Chiefs' cap situation:

http://chiefconcerns.com/a-tight-fit-the-2013-kansas-chiefs-salary-cap-issue/

While I have slightly different numbers the message remains the same: The Chiefs are up against the 2013 cap in a bad way. And that is with about a 14 M$ roll over from 2012.

2.8 M$ above the cap is something to be slightly worried about now - however, it seems manageable. The big issue will be 2014 when the Chiefs won't have any money to roll over. Anticipating a 2% rise in cap (roughly 2.5 M$) they would be about 13.5 M$ over the cap with the current roster.

So what can be done, what would I expect?

1. The Chiefs won't be able to re-sign any of their high priced 2014 free agents (read: Albert, Asamoah, McCluster, Jackson) without some decisive moves. The most valuable of that crew in my opinion is Asamoah - so he's the one I'd try to keep nevertheless.

2. The Chiefs won't be able to dive deep into the 2014 free agent market.I'm fine with that as that could net them a couple (or even more) compensatory picks for the 2015 draft.I'd be very aware of that fact and only target such free agents which are irrelevant for comp pick compensation anyway.

3. Sign Eric Fisher to a backloaded contract. Minimum base salaries in 2013 and 2014, add the money saved there to the signing bonus. The contract will be fully guaranteed anyway (I'm not sure whether the rookie salary allocation allows for such a contract structure though ).

4. The Chiefs need to consider some moves now to clear cap and (if possible) create some roll over for the next season. Guys that I'd consider for release include (numbers indicate cap savings in k$): Tony Moeaki (850), Geoff Schwartz (750), Terrance Copper (350), Thomas Gafford (240), Edgar Jones (350), Jerrell Powe (80), Ricky Stanzi (120), Marcus Dixon (150), Frank Zombo (150). Most of the other contracts would not create savings in 2013 and 2014 due to the way they are structured.

5. A big help (and a big commitment) would be an extension for Eric Berry that shifts a significant cap amount into 2015, when the new TV contracts kick in. I consider an extension to Tamba Hali (under contract through 2015) highly unlikely due to his age.

6. Finally, they need to develop some UDFA and late round picks into solid backups (at minimum) for the duration of their rookie contracts. And they need to keep that line filled over the next drafts to balance the salary situation. The Chiefs had little success here over the past 5-10 years - and it shows on the roster and the cap situation. This may provide an extra chance for guys like Wilson, Hemingway, Kush, Hartman, Thorpe to make the final 53 over more experienced, may be slightly better, but more expensive veterans like Sherman, Gilyard, or Brown.
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samsel23


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 07, 2013 10:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Justin Houston getting locked up is right with Jon Asamoah.
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simonwayne


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 08, 2013 12:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Solid list of steps. Extend Berry, Houston, and find a way to keep Asamoah. Let Albert walk and slide Fisher over to LT. Draft a RT in the 2nd-3rd round and let him and Stephenson duke it out in TC.

If we can draft a strong class in 2014 then we'll be set
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Rumless


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 08, 2013 12:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Really solidifies my feeling that Moeaki is on the outside looking in at tight end - bringing in Kelce and Fasano really boosted the depth, and with that near-million lurking in potential cap savings, if he doesn't impress at camp I will be stunned if he's on our 53 man roster.
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KC_Guy


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 08, 2013 12:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

samsel23 wrote:
Justin Houston getting locked up is right with Jon Asamoah.


Houston is signed through 2014 on the cheap side. Extending him NOW would worsen the cap situation significantly. Thus I wouold be surprised if the Chiefs did this - I just think they can't even if they wanted to.
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samsel23


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 08, 2013 1:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

KC_Guy wrote:
samsel23 wrote:
Justin Houston getting locked up is right with Jon Asamoah.


Houston is signed through 2014 on the cheap side. Extending him NOW would worsen the cap situation significantly. Thus I wouold be surprised if the Chiefs did this - I just think they can't even if they wanted to.


I was more thinking we need to extend him before he really breaks the bank. DeVito, Daniels, D. Robinson, Avery, and S. Smith(possibly) really need to impress if they want to be more than 1 year guys.

My ultimate hope is Bray or Stanzi show enough to be a capable backup.

We should also look to extend A. Smith next year (if we really like him). Extend him 4-5 years and that will open quite a bit of space.

Our cap next year is terrible, but if we're smart with extensions and certain guys step up as role players, we should be able to resign Jackson, Asamoah, and start negotiations with J. Houston.

Right now Albert is just a luxury and I actually hope we move on (even as much as I don't think he gets enough props).
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KC_Guy


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 08, 2013 4:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

samsel23 wrote:
KC_Guy wrote:
samsel23 wrote:
Justin Houston getting locked up is right with Jon Asamoah.


Houston is signed through 2014 on the cheap side. Extending him NOW would worsen the cap situation significantly. Thus I wouold be surprised if the Chiefs did this - I just think they can't even if they wanted to.


I was more thinking we need to extend him before he really breaks the bank. DeVito, Daniels, D. Robinson, Avery, and S. Smith(possibly) really need to impress if they want to be more than 1 year guys.

My ultimate hope is Bray or Stanzi show enough to be a capable backup.

We should also look to extend A. Smith next year (if we really like him). Extend him 4-5 years and that will open quite a bit of space.

Our cap next year is terrible, but if we're smart with extensions and certain guys step up as role players, we should be able to resign Jackson, Asamoah, and start negotiations with J. Houston.

Right now Albert is just a luxury and I actually hope we move on (even as much as I don't think he gets enough props).


The guys you mention as potential post 2013-cuts are untouchable from a cap perspective. The way their contracts are structured any release would add a significant burden to the 2014 cap due to accelerated signing boni. With their spending spree this year the Chiefs manouvered themselves out of the free agent market for at least 2014, if not for longer.

On Jackson: I don't see a way the Chiefs will be able to keep more than one of their 2014 high priced free agents. Sorry. I've got the impression they kept him just to have a chance to get a comp draft pick in 2015 by avoiding to lose him this year (when they signed so many free agents they wouldn't have a chance to get a comp pick at all).
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DT58_lives_on


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 08, 2013 10:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

KC I think these are things that you, I and Nic talked about a lot in the past. I'm pretty nervous, but honestly I have faith in the cap management (on the whole) of Andy and Dorsey. I do however think we may have to swallow hard on losing a couple players next year.

Quote:
Draft a RT in the 2nd-3rd round and let him and Stephenson duke it out in TC.


A second/third (one of which we won't have) on a RT when we have Stephenson might be a luxury honestly next year. We may end up with an actual hole we need to fill...not a possible back-up.

I said to Nic when discussing this issue this morning. I honestly could see Avery/Baldwin being cut lose if they don't impress in training camp as it doesn't sound like either lit it on fire in OTAs.

Even though Tamba's cap number drops a TON next year, I think it's possible this is his last season in KC unless he makes it impossible to cut him, and even then, I think we could see an attempt to trade him for more picks.
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oldman9er


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 08, 2013 11:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm no cap expert, but what I am reading states that KC is sitting high with nearly 15 million in dead money this season. (Cassell, Breaston, Dorsey, Winston, Boss taking up the vast majority)

So wouldn't that mean it is likely that the dead money hit in 2014 drops dramatically? therefore opening up some nice cap room then?
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KC_Guy


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 08, 2013 12:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

oldman9er wrote:
I'm no cap expert, but what I am reading states that KC is sitting high with nearly 15 million in dead money this season. (Cassell, Breaston, Dorsey, Winston, Boss taking up the vast majority)

So wouldn't that mean it is likely that the dead money hit in 2014 drops dramatically? therefore opening up some nice cap room then?


Good point ... but that portion will be eaten by the raises of some major contracts (Bowe 4 M$ to 12 M$, De Vito, Fasano, Smith & Robinson +2.5 M$ each, ...)

I'll try to do a rough 2014 estimate when (if .... ) I find the time.
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oldman9er


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 08, 2013 1:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

KC_Guy wrote:
oldman9er wrote:
I'm no cap expert, but what I am reading states that KC is sitting high with nearly 15 million in dead money this season. (Cassell, Breaston, Dorsey, Winston, Boss taking up the vast majority)

So wouldn't that mean it is likely that the dead money hit in 2014 drops dramatically? therefore opening up some nice cap room then?


Good point ... but that portion will be eaten by the raises of some major contracts (Bowe 4 M$ to 12 M$, De Vito, Fasano, Smith & Robinson +2.5 M$ each, ...)


Also, good point. But then, Hali's cap hit drops 4 million in 2014.. Robinson would probably released unless he really excels.. which saves about 4 million.. Devito also could be released to help about 2 million.. Chase Daniel could get released to save 1.4 million.. Avery for 1.85..

^ not at all saying I have the answers. Gonna have to let some currently marginal players walk. Things do appear to be tight in KC.
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Mongo


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 08, 2013 3:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

On the plus side, Brandon Flowers could have his 2014 7.5M salary and reporting bonus converted to signing bonus over his last 3 years. As could Berry, if they don’t redo his deal all together. They could redo Hali as well. I’m looking at Sportrac and his salary cap hit is still 8.5M next year. You may have to cut him. I’d hate to see it, but this is the downside of a salary cap.

Here’s something to add to your worries. Look at Jamaal Charles’ contract. He is really a bargain next year at 4.83M, especially if he has the year we’re all hoping for. They’d be smart to pay up for him at some point.

This is the hard part of the GM’s job, no doubt – weighing future cap hits versus projected cap dollars.
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samsel23


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 08, 2013 3:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mongo wrote:
On the plus side, Brandon Flowers could have his 2014 7.5M salary and reporting bonus converted to signing bonus over his last 3 years. As could Berry, if they don’t redo his deal all together. They could redo Hali as well. I’m looking at Sportrac and his salary cap hit is still 8.5M next year. You may have to cut him. I’d hate to see it, but this is the downside of a salary cap.

Here’s something to add to your worries. Look at Jamaal Charles’ contract. He is really a bargain next year at 4.83M, especially if he has the year we’re all hoping for. They’d be smart to pay up for him at some point.

This is the hard part of the GM’s job, no doubt – weighing future cap hits versus projected cap dollars.


Charles and DJ's deals were the best thing Pioli got done. They were paid handsomely at the start.
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Mongo


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 08, 2013 4:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

samsel23 wrote:
Mongo wrote:
On the plus side, Brandon Flowers could have his 2014 7.5M salary and reporting bonus converted to signing bonus over his last 3 years. As could Berry, if they don’t redo his deal all together. They could redo Hali as well. I’m looking at Sportrac and his salary cap hit is still 8.5M next year. You may have to cut him. I’d hate to see it, but this is the downside of a salary cap.

Here’s something to add to your worries. Look at Jamaal Charles’ contract. He is really a bargain next year at 4.83M, especially if he has the year we’re all hoping for. They’d be smart to pay up for him at some point.

This is the hard part of the GM’s job, no doubt – weighing future cap hits versus projected cap dollars.


Charles and DJ's deals were the best thing Pioli got done. They were paid handsomely at the start.

Most deals are structured that way. Few of them are honored by player and/or the team for the entire duration of the contract. Both sides know this going in. (Except the players whine about it! Different topic, different day.)

The only figure that matters is guaranteed money and the number of years until that amount is exhausted. After that the rest is crap. It’s just to pad the total salary so more can be offered in a signing bonus.

For example DBo's contract was for 5/$56M on paper. However only $20M is guaranteed over the next three years (? Sportrac is often sloppy in its reporting). Bowe will never see year 4 under the terms of this contract. He'll want more and/or the team will need to renegotiate. His contract is in reality for 3yrs/$30M.

As you said, Pioli signed DJ and Charlie wisely. However they have already exhausted their guaranteed dollars. They will want a new lump of cash and they Chiefs may need to renegotiate to get under the cap.

I’m not too worried. Most teams go through this at some point. Few fall off of the face of the Earth because of it any more. You may lose a player or two, but the Chiefs will manage to keep their core.
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KC_Guy


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 08, 2013 5:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We're getting to the core issue of the whole thing:

A well balanced and managed team will spend only the money (cap) it has available in any year. In an ideal world a team would NOT use a prorated signing bonus to build the team but a roster bonus that would be due 24 hours after the player signed the contract. Thus the team would not sell the future to get a player under contract right now. The financial (read: cash) implications for both the team and the player would be identical. Only in exceptional circumstances a team should use the signing bonus - if the team is in a win-now mood and is sure it would not use all of its available cap the next year.

The signing bonus (and its proration) is a tool to help teams with senior (read; high prized) players to use the salary void it thinks it will experience during a rebuild phase. To take off the salary top of one period and shift it to a low-pay phase.

Obviously the current staff decided the Chiefs need to win NOW to get back the support of the KC Kingdom.

One of the teams priority over the next years will be to maintain a somewhat competitive team (and thus the fan support) while working its way out of the cap quagmire they are in.

As a GM I'd set ceilings (or call it projections) for what I'm able to spend on base salaries, roster boni, and prorated signing boni.

If I had to account for more than say 20 - 25% of the cap in prorated signing boni (and with that I mean the sum of ALL outstanding prorated boni I'll have to account for one year or the other) I'd feel uncomfortable because that's an indication I may have a problem to part ways with underperforming expensive players - taking away the flexibility to adjust permanently on a performance (not cap-) based evaluation of the roster.

If I read it right that's what Denver is trying to establish now (elway is doing a magnificent job over there) - and Oakland is on the other end of the spectrum as a leftover of the Al Davis era.

The Chiefs need to be careful not to go down the Raiders way - thus I think (hope) cap considerations will play a more important role from next year. Right now they committed to a whole bunch of middle-of-the pack guys for the next two to three years without a real chance to cut them without ending up in a cap dilemma.
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