Dallas Cowboys salary cap primer

March, 1, 2014
Mar 1
11:00
AM ET
The NFL's salary cap for 2014 will be $133 million.

It's a $10 million increase from 2013.

So what does this mean for the Dallas Cowboys?
  • The Cowboys were projected at $20-25 million over the salary cap before it was established at $133 million.
  • The highest salary cap figure belongs to quarterback Tony Romo at $21.7 million. That figure will be lowered along with Sean Lee ($7.5 million) and Orlando Scandrick ($6.6 million) to create nearly $17 million in cap space.
  • DeMarcus Ware is scheduled to get a base salary of $12.2 million in 2014 but Cowboys executive vice president Stephen Jones said Ware's cap number at $16.003 million will be lowered. The Cowboys can release Ware and save $7.4 million against the cap, restructure or offer a pay cut to create space as well.
  • Brandon Carr has a base salary of $7.5 million with a cap figure of $12.2 million. The team might leave Carr's contract alone so he won't eat up more of the salary cap in future years.
  • Miles Austin has a cap figure of $8.249 million. If Austin is a post-June 1 cut, the Cowboys save $5.5 million, however the team won't receive those savings until June 1.
  • There is speculation backup center Phil Costa will be released. If that's the case, the team saves $1.5 million.
  • Justin Durant could also be a salary cap release and save the team $1.250 million.
  • If the Cowboys tendered running back Phillip Tanner, who is a restricted free agent, it would cost them, $1.4 million. The team isn't expected to pay Tanner that sum given he's the No. 4 running back on the projected 2014 depth chart at his position, so he'll be allowed to hit the free agent market.
  • The Cowboys released four players on Friday afternoon creating a little more than $1 million in cap space.
Calvin Watkins joined ESPNDallas.com in September 2009. He's covered the Cowboys since 2006 and also has covered colleges, boxing and high school sports.

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