Navigating the intricate world of NFL cap space, the NFC teams in 2023 displayed strategic dynamism. This analysis delves into each team’s financial maneuvers, providing insights into their prospective on-field impact.
1.) Arizona Cardinals: Boasting $24,415,824 in cap space, the Cardinals have placed emphasis on bolstering defensive depth with standout signings like Kyzir White and Kevin Strong. However, notable losses like Zach Allen and Byron Murphy may affect their performance. The team’s future looks geared towards making room for Kyler Murray’s looming hefty cap hits.
Cardinals Cap Space: $24,415,824
- Active Cap Spending: $167,292,893
- Dead Money: $36,960,748
2.) Detroit Lions: With a comfortable $19,695,871, Detroit’s moves, including snagging David Montgomery and drafting Jahmyr Gibbs, underline their intent to revive their ground game, a traditionally strong facet of the team. Goff’s deal will weighs heavy on their cap, but with rookie contracts at other expensive positions like receiver, edge rusher, and tackle allow them to roll over a ton of cap to the future.
Lions Cap Space: $19,695,871
- Active Cap Spending: $187,937,786
- Dead Money: $19,057,305
3.) Dallas Cowboys: Dallas, equipped with $19,692,691, made headlines by acquiring stars like Stephon Gilmore and Brandin Cooks. The team’s cap management, punctuated by Dak Prescott‘s renegotiation, suggests a win-now mentality in Big D, while still keeping expenses lower than other win-now teams.
- Active Cap Spending: $195,432,594
- Dead Money: $14,638,481
4.) Carolina Panthers: Possessing $19,666,365, the Panthers herald a new era, drafting QB Bryce Young. Acquisitions of D.J. Chark and Adam Thielen further cement their offensive overhaul aspirations. This is a team that will be paying Brian Burns a very large deal on the horizon and try to bring in veterans to surround Young, who will be on his rookie deal.
- Active Cap Spending: $166,328,942
- Dead Money: $51,589,034
5.) Chicago Bears: Operating on $18,215,431, Chicago showcased strategic prowess by trading for future assets and signing defensive stalwarts like T.J. Edwards and Tremaine Edmunds. The division is up for grabs and Fields is still on his rookie deal. They’ve been able to team him up with D.J. Moore and are able to roll over a good amount of cap room to next season.
- Active Cap Spending: $190,192,755
- Dead Money: $23,526,477
6.) Green Bay Packers: Navigating a post-Aaron Rodgers era with $13,576,553, Green Bay’s future hinges on Jordan Love and key draft pick, EDGE Lukas Van Ness. They’ve got some big contracts but are trying to make it work with a lean wide receiver group and Love still on his rookie contract.
- Active Cap Spending: $155,371,480
- Dead Money: $57,319,900
7.) Philadelphia Eagles: The Eagles, working with $12,990,616, retained veteran stars Jason Kelce and Brandon Graham. They reached a long term deal with Jalen Hurts and are loading up to take advantage of his low cap hits in the upcoming couple of season.
- Active Cap Spending: $166,420,216
- Dead Money: $54,833,245
8.) Washington Commanders: With $12,745,403, Washington released Carson Wentz to hand over the reigns to Sam Howell. Securing Daron Payne hints at building a formidable defensive line. They passed on Chase Young’s 5th year option. This is a team that is trying to rebuild on the run.
- Active Cap Spending: $193,984,793
- Dead Money: $23,915,656
9.) Seattle Seahawks: Operating on $11,365,740, Seattle reiterates trust in veterans like Bobby Wagner while integrating rookies such as Devon Witherspoon.They brought back Geno Smith and are looking to strike now while the rest of their division is dealing with their own issues.
- Active Cap Spending: $192,266,810
- Dead Money: $18,007,999
10.) Minnesota Vikings: At $10,640,703, Minnesota’s moves, including parting with Dalvin Cook, spell change. The potential massive contract for Justin Jefferson will likely shape their future financial landscape.
- Active Cap Spending: $174,041,123
- Dead Money: $36,557,601
11.) Los Angeles Rams: With a cap of $10,104,771, LA’s trades involving stars Jalen Ramsey and Allen Robinson echo a period of recalibration and potential rebuilding. They need serious production from their veteran stars who possess might cap hits.
- Active Cap Spending: $139,993,207
- Dead Money: $74,233,728
12.) San Francisco 49ers: At $10,052,558, the 49ers made strategic defensive moves while adding Sam Darnold for QB depth. The anticipated Nick Bosa deal is the talk of the town. With three different cheap options at QB, they’re hoping the talent throughout the rest of the roster makes up for sub par talent at QB.
- Active Cap Spending: $209,905,448
- Dead Money: $17,174,319
13.) Atlanta Falcons: With a cap of $10,025,127, Atlanta’s plethora of signings, led by Jessie Bates III, and a top 10 RB draft pick, imply an aggressive win-now approach. Despite the giant question mark at QB, this is a team that is spending and drafting like they intend to win now.
- Active Cap Spending: $200,870,309
- Dead Money: $18,777,668
14.) New Orleans Saints: Armed with $11,406,997, New Orleans’ acquisition of Derek Carr signals an offensive reset, striving to reclaim their high-flying offensive reputation. They find themselves at the bottom of the pack in cap space in the conference, yet its a bit better than where they’ve been in years prior. They signed Carr to a big contact and are looking to take advantage of the lower cap hit years while Alvin Kamara is still in his prime.
- Active Cap Spending: $187,620,499
- Dead Money: $24,584,012
15.) Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Tampa’s limited $682,503 cap saw strategic moves, bringing in Baker Mayfield and retaining defensive stalwarts Jamel Dean and Lavonte David. This a team that is dealing with the aftermath of the Tom Brady era and should probably be looking to completely rebuild, but in a division with no clear leader, they may yet have a chance to compete.
- Active Cap Spending: $150,842,370
- Dead Money: $75,352,035
16.) New York Giants: The Giants, holding $5,176,736, focused on contract renegotiations for their young core, ensuring the likes of Daniel Jones and Saquon Barkley remain integral to their plans. The Giants doubled down on their playoff run last year.
- Active Cap Spending: $201,005,520
- Dead Money: $22,929,181