Restructuring Contracts clears cap room
Robbing Peter to pay Paul is a way of life in the NFL. We just saw how the Browns robbed $27 million from the 2022 NFL cap to pay salaries on the 2023 cap. But did you know the NFL teams can restructure contracts to reduce the amount of money charged to the cap?
In a move that would make Bernie Madoff proud, the Browns can legally pay Deshaun Watson's salary in advance as a bonus. Because it was paid as a bonus, the Browns can prorate the bonus over a five-year period against the cap. The difference between the prorated amount of the bonus is subtracted from Watson's cap hit in 2023.
In plain English, the Browns can pay Watson in advance for services rendered but only one-fifth of what they paid him counts against the salary cap. For example, the Browns restructure Watson's contract adding a few years and paying out 50 million of his 2023 salary as a bonus. Now only 10 million of the 50 million counts against the cap. The move would theoretically reduce Watson's roughly 55 million cap hit to 15 million.
This is an obviously over simplified example. The NFL salary cap Ponzi scheme is far more complex than how I have described it. But the principles hold the same. A team can convert salary into a bonus as part of a contract extension, spreading the bonus over a 5-year period against the cap.
Thus, Watson's contract may look like a roughly $ 55-million yearly albatross or a $230-million disaster, but with NFL Ponzi scheme voodoo economics cap rules the contract is starting to look like a bargain.
The Browns may look over the salary cap on paper, but in reality the salary cap is just a number. Teams can subvert the cap a multitude of ways. NFL teams have become so adept at subverting the the cap, one could argue the cap exists de jure only. De facto it does not exist.
It's time to harken to the voice of Reason. Do not let the Chicken Littles of the world convince you Watson's salary cap hit will destroy the NFL. Do not let the boogeyman salary cap monster under your bed convince you that NFL owners are colluding to fix the salary cap after the Browns broke it.
Why would you feel bad for billionaire owners anyway? They just want your money.
No, like the NFL salary cap, Chicken Little and the salary cap boogeyman do not exist. Stories about these mythological entities are told to keep little children following rules and not asking questions. It is time to grow up and put away your childlike fear of Chicken Little, the boogeyman and the NFL salary cap.
The voice of Reason speaks. It says: the salary cap is a myth. There is no cap. No cap.