Cowboys less than $200K under salary cap


After all the moves made by the Cowboys the last two weeks, the organization is roughly $175,000 under the salary cap as free agency begins Tuesday afternoon.

So what does that mean?

The Cowboys basically can't do anything in free agency or sign their draft picks. So more financial moves are needed.

The team most likely will work out a new deal with quarterback Tony Romo and quite possibly with defensive end Anthony Spencer, who is franchised for $10.6 million.

The NFL has set the salary cap at $123 million, but the Cowboys -- after a $5 million penalty administrated by the league for Miles Austin's contract during the uncapped season and $2 million carried over from the 2012 season -- will have their cap set at $120 million for 2013.

One of the moves the Cowboys can make won't take effect until later this offseason, as the Cowboys can save $7 million if they decide to release tackle Doug Free as a post June 1 cut.

A recap of some moves:

  • The Cowboys saved $3 million by cutting inside linebacker Dan Connor.

  • The Cowboys saved $7.8 million by restructuring the deals of defensive tackle Jay Ratliff, cornerback Orlando Scandrick and guard Mackenzy Bernadeau.

  • Tight end Jason Witten's restructured deal saved nearly $3.65 million.

  • A clause in cornerback Brandon Carr's contract lowered his cap number for 2013 and saved $10.8 million.

  • The Cowboys saved $4 million in cap space by restructuring defensive end DeMarcus Ware's contract.

  • Wide receiver Miles Austin's restructured deal provided $3 million in savings.

  • Offensive linemen Mackenzy Bernadeau and Ryan Cook also cleared cap space by reworking their deals.