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The Jets 2017 Salary Cap

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Time to think about next year.

Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The 2016 Jets season still has five games left, but for Jets fans it was over a while ago.  Time to think about the 2017 season. Let's start with a review of where the Jets stand in terms of the salary cap.

Overthecap.com is my go to source for cap information. They estimate the 2017 NFL salary cap will be $166 million. These estimates have tended to come in a bit low, as NFL revenues have consistently exceeded expectations, but this year, as has been highly publicized, the NFL is running well below projections in television ratings, so who knows how the cap will play out. In any event $166 million seems like as good an estimate as any for the time being, so let's go with that.

The Jets currently have about $0.5 million in 2016 cap space that will carry over into 2017, so let's add that to the Jets 2017 cap.  Now the Jets have a 2017 cap of $166.5 million, and the Jets currently have $167 million in salary cap committed to 2017, so currently the Jets are over the projected 2017 salary cap by $0.5 million.  That's not so good.  It gets worse before it gets better.

The Jets currently have 48 players under contract, but they will eventually have 53 to start the 2017 season, so we need to account for the additional five players at minimal salaries.  At $0.5 million per player that works out to an additional $2.5 million added to the 2017 cap. Now the Jets are $3 million over the cap.  Next we have to account for a 10 man practice squad, which will cost another $1 million.  Now the Jets are $4 million over the cap.  Next up: the 2017 draft picks.  This is a bit tricky, as we're not yet sure where the Jets will  be drafting, and that will affect how much the draft class will cost. Currently the Jets are slotted in at the 5th slot in the 2017 draft, so let's go with that.  If the Jets select 5th in the draft the entire draft class will cost the Jets about $5 million in net cap space after accounting for cutting minimum salary type players to make room for the draft class.  Now the Jets are $9 million over the 2017 salary cap.  There's one more thing we need to account for, and that is in season maneuvering room.  Most teams like to have at least $3 million or so for in season moves that become necessary as players are hurt or cut.  That brings us to a minimum of $12 million above the 2017 salary cap. That's the starting point we need to keep in mind as we contemplate what players need to be cut and how much salary cap space the Jets will eventually have to work with in the free agent market.

Now the candidates to be cut.  Here are all the players that could be cut and save at least $1 million in cap space:

Player

Cap $ Savings

Dead Money

.

Ryan Clady

10 million

0.5 million

Darrelle Revis

9.3 million

6 million

Nick Mangold

9.1 million

0

Sheldon Richardson

8.1 million

0

Brandon Marshall

7.5 million

0

David Harris

6.5 million

0

Eric Decker

5.8 million

3 million

Marcus Gilchrist

4.6 million

2.8 million

Breno Giacomini

4.5 million

0.6 million

Buster Skrine

3.5 million

5 million

Nick Folk

3 million

0.6 million

Erin Henderson

2.8 million

0

James Carpenter

2.6 million

4.2 million

Steve McLendon

2.1 million

1.8 million

Austin Seferian-Jenkins

1.1 million

0

A few things of note here.  Erin Henderson is still technically under contract with the Jets, but he almost certainly will not be with the team in 2017, so we can cut him right away. That brings us to $9 million over the 2017 salary cap.  Darrelle Revis' contract also bears some discussion.  Revis is listed as having approximately $6 million in dead money. If he is cut and no other team signs him that will be true.  If however Revis is cut and another team signs him then whatever amount he makes in base salary with his new team will be offset against the Jets' guaranteed money, meaning that amount will be deducted from dead money and added to cap savings.

So there is the current picture of the Jets' 2017 salary cap situation. What moves would you make to get under the cap and create some cap space?  What do you think is realistic as far as what Mike Maccagnan might do?