Good news for those hoping to see the Falcons throw around some cash in free agency ahead of the 2014 season:
NFL's salary cap now projected to rise to about $130 million, up 5 percent from $123 million last year, per league sources. More $ for all.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) February 20, 2014
How much cap space does this give the Falcons, if it comes to pass? Subtracting Tony Gonzalez's $7 million cap hit and Garrett Reynolds' money and adding Gabe Carimi's reportedly veteran minimum salary puts the Falcons approximately $23.5 million under the cap, with an appreciative hat tip toward Over the Cap.
That kind of money gives you the room for one huge splash free agent, another mid-level starter or two and your rookie class, with a little left over. If the Falcons follow through on the expected cut of Thomas DeCoud, the last major release I expect in the next month or so, they'll be sitting about $26.5 million. As James noted the other day, the Falcons will need only about $3 million to sign their incoming 2014 draft class.
Take these estimates to be exactly that, but it's clear the Falcons will be working with $20+ million in cap space when free agency starts up on March 11. With a strong free agent class to sift through, this is the perfect time for the Falcons to try to plug one or two of their biggest roster needs with quality players before they roll into the draft in May. Exciting times, friends.
Who do you want the Falcons to sign with some of that cap space?