Patriots

Looking at how the dough is divvied up among Patriots rivals

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Looking at how the dough is divvied up among Patriots rivals

Earlier today, I took a look at the top of the Patriots pay scale for 2013 and pointed out that Tom Brady, Vince Wilfork and Logan Mankins will chew up about 35 percent of the team's cap in 2013.

Also noted was the number of Patriots with cap hits of 3 million or more and the percentage of the cap those players swallowed up.

The Patriots have nine players who'll carry cap hits of more than 3 million into 2013 unless there's some renegotiation done. The nine will take up 65.95 million of the Pats cap of 126.6 million (they are rolling in 5.6 from last year's unused cap space).

Now, a look at the rest of the AFC East and some key teams in the AFC. Obviously, some moves are going to be made. But here's where the teams stood according to NFL figures at the end of the regular season.

Buffalo Bills
2013 cap (with rollover from 2012): 130.9 million

Top 3 hits: Mario Williams (12.4 million), Ryan Fitzpatrick (10.45 million), Chris Kelsay (6.0 million)

Players over 3 million: Williams, Fitzpatrick, Kelsay, Kyle Williams (5.8 million), Stevie Johnson (5.65 million), Marcel Dareus (5.65 million), Mark Anderson (4 million), Nick Barnett (4 million), Brad Smith (4 million), Fred Jackson (3.7 million), C.J. Spiller (3.7 million)

Total hits of players over 3 million: 65.35 million

Moving Parts: Jairus Byrd is a free agent and a candidate to be franchised or re-signed to a generous deal. Fitzpatrick is going to get a shave or a release, though his cap hit will still be more than 7 million, it appears, if he is let go.

New York Jets
2013 cap (with rollover from 2012): 124.5 million

Top 3 hits: David Harris (13 million), Mark Sanchez (12.85 million), Santonio Holmes (12.5 million), Antonio Cromartie (10.75 million)

Players over 3 million: Mark Sanchez (12.85 million), Darrelle Revis (9 million), D'Brickashaw Ferguson (10.7 million), David Harris (13 million), Santonio Holmes (12.5 million), Antonio Cromartie (10.75 million), Nick Mangold (9.1 million), Bart Scott (8.65 million), Calvin Pace (11.6 million), Sione Pouha (6.2 million), Jason Smith (12 million),

Total hits of players over 3 million: 116.35 million

Moving Parts: Insane. One caveat: Jason Smith, acquired by trade with the Rams, is the only guy who isn't the Jets stupidity. Meanwhile, the team has valued free agents in Dustin Keller, Shonn Greene and -- to a lesser degree -- LaRon Landry.

Miami Dolphins
2013 cap (with rollover from 2012):126.4 million

Top 3 hits: Karlos Dansby (8.58 million), Paul Soliai (7.38 million), Richard Marshall (5.7 million)

Players over 3 million: Karlos Dansby (8.58 million), Cameron Wake (5 million), Paul Soliai (7.38 million), Dimitri Patterson (4.6 million), Richard Marshall (5.77 million), Kevin Burnett (5.7 million), Richie Incognito (5.383 million), Davone Bess (3.43 million), Dan Carpenter (3 million)

Total hits of players over 3 million: 48.77 million

Moving Parts: The Dolphins have some pricey re-signs and decisions looming -- left tackle Jake Long, wide receiver Brian Hartline, corner Sean Smith and maybe Reggie Bush. But overall, they are in excellent shape

Baltimore Ravens
2013 cap (with rollover from 2012): 122.2 million

Top 3 hits: Terrell Suggs (13 million), Haloti Ngata (11.5 million), Anquan Boldin (7.53 million)

Players over 3 million: Haloti Ngata (11.5 million), Terrell Suggs (13 million), Anquan Boldin (7.53 million), Marshal Yanda (7.5 million), Ray Rice (5.75 million), Lardarius Webb (5.38 million), Jacoby Jones (4.9 million), Vonta Leach (4.3 million), Michael Oher (4.255 million), Jameel McLain (4.2 million), Matt Birk (3.4 million), Bernard Pollard (3.25 million).

Total hits of players over 3 million: 74.965 million

Moving Parts: Joe Flacco's going to be re-signed and that's a fat contractcap hit. Birk is unsure if he'll return. Ed Reed is a free agent who wants to come back to the Ravens, he says. They have some hard decisions and requests to make.

Julio Jones presents Johnson Bademosi opportunity to prove he's not niche player

Julio Jones presents Johnson Bademosi opportunity to prove he's not niche player

None of us thought Johnson Bademosi would be starting this past Sunday at MetLife Stadium against the Jets because -- well -- that’s not what we perceive the 27-year-old to be. He’s a special teamer. It’s how he’s made his mark in the NFL dating back to 2012 with Cleveland. So why would that change in mid-October for a team he’s only been with for six weeks? Because Bademosi is -- and has always been -- intent on proving he’s more than a niche player.

“I see myself as a football player,” he said, “and whatever position they put me in, I’m going to try to be the best because that’s how I operate and who I am as a person. Whether that’s as a cornerback, on special teams, if they ask me to play wildcat quarterback. Whatever…”

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Bill Belichick and his staff asked for Bademosi to go on the field and not come off. He played 73 defensive snaps in addition to his usual core four special teams duties. 

“I felt like I played a whole game,” Bademosi joked, before saying, “I love playing football so I’m going to go out there and empty myself.”

He did just that, getting targeted only two times in the 24-17 win over the Jets. It was hoped that Bademosi would return to his normal specialist role, but with Stephon Gilmore still out with a concussion, it now seems more and more likely that the sixth year pro will have to be an ironman again Sunday night in primetime against the Falcons. Historically, the Pats have defended bigger receivers. That means Bademosi may be responsible for one of the most dangerous players in the league, Julio Jones.

“He’s an amazing player," he said. “We all know what he’s capable of. As a defense, we have to be prepared for him.”

The Pats were on Super Bowl Sunday and Jones still made a couple of ridiculous plays with either Logan Ryan or Eric Rowe in coverage with safety help over the top.

“He’s fast. He’s physical. He can jump. He can run. He’s smart. He’s everything you want in a wide receiver,” said Bademosi without blinking an eye. That’s the kind of confidence you want from a player at that position and facing this type of challenge. 

“You gotta believe in yourself,” he said “ I’m confident in my abilities. I work hard and trust my preparation.”

Being an elite athlete certainly helps. Bademosi was a scholarship football player at Stanford -- “some guy named Jim Harbaugh called” -- before ending up in the NFL. But it’s Bademosi’s willingness to go all in in the film room that impressed safety Devin McCourty. 

“…I think, honestly, the most work he did was probably with just himself jumping into the film, watching more stuff to exactly see,” said McCourty Thursday. “You know, when you’re a backup more, you’re kind of trying to see everything because you don’t know what role you might be thrust upon once you’re in the game. But, I think once he knew he was starting, it was kind of like, ‘Alright, let me focus in on this.’ I thought he did an awesome job of just being ready and competing.”

Bademosi will have to compete his ass off Sunday night, even against what has been to this point a physically compromised Jones. Based on what he did several days ago, there’s no reason to believe the Pats cornerback won’t bring everything he has, trying to prove again that he’s more than just a special teams whiz.

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