The Atlanta Falcons can always use more salary cap space. But spiraling towards an off-season that will likely involve a pretty significant shakeup, they need all the money they can get. Per CBS Sport's Jason LaCanfora, NFL teams should expect a substantial jump in the salary cap next season.
NFL Management Council informed teams at league meeting today '15 cap projects b/n $138.6M-$141.8M. I bet it ends up higher. Often does— Jason La Canfora (@JasonLaCanfora) December 10, 2014
What or who do we have to thank for this extra cap space? One word: television. The NFL recently signed new deals with CBS and DirectTV, and that means more revenue. More revenue means more cap space. Simple enough, no?
For the Falcons, this is good news. Going into next season, the Falcons' total cap number is about $113 million. That's before they cut Sam Baker and Steven Jackson ($1.9 million and $3.75 million in cap savings respectively). Even if we go with LaCanfora's low-end projection, the Falcons will have about $31 million to play with if they cut Baker and Jackson, and about $26 million if they don't. Mind you, Baker would represent $9.2 million in dead money.
Edit: As pointed out below, cutting Baker would cost the Falcons $1.9 million in 2015 cap space, not save them that amount. My apologies. Personally, I still don't think that makes him safe. If the Falcons have substantial cap space, they may choose to cut him and burn a little bit of it.