The Atlanta Falcons now have upwards of $20 million in cap space to play with, but it's going to disappear quickly.
One of their top priorities this off-season has to be William Moore, the hard-hitting, pass-picking, Brees-deflatin' safety machine (Canyonero!) who is a free agent for the first time. Given his play-making abilities, he's likely to command a significant salary. With his injury history, though, it's uncertain how many years and millions he'll be able to squeeze out of interested teams.
D. Orlando Ledbetter at the AJC has a prediction. According to DOL, Moore should make around $25-30 million over five years with his next contract. Teams can be creative about how they engineer the yearly salary and cap hits, but that's a nice salary. In comparison, Thomas DeCoud got five years and about $17.5 million a year ago from the Falcons.
It's possible that DOL is guessing here, but if it is a guess, it's probably pretty close to on-point. If the Falcons pony up for Moore, they're going to chew up a significant portion of those salary cap savings right off the bat, more than likely. I would like to see Moore back in Atlanta, but teams like the Rams and the safety-needy NFC East squads are going to be awfully tempted to throw a sizeable contract at him, too.
Let's hope the Falcons can figure out a way to keep Moore without completely breaking the bank for him, as that injury history is still a limiting factor. That said, I'd love to have him back there with DeCoud again in 2013. Would you?