As Jay Gruden and company finalize the coaching staff in another part of the building at Redskins Park are looking forward to free agency and how best to utilize the approximately $20 million in cap space the Redskins have. Here we’ll take a position-by-position look at the cap situation and explore some of the Redskins’ options. Previously we looked at the interior offensive line and offensive tackle, tight ends, running backs, quarterbacks, and wide receivers on offense and on the other side of the ball the defensive line.
Up today, the outside linebackers.
The Redskins have four outside linebackers under contract for 2015:
—Kerrigan’s contract is a one-year option that the Redskins were able to activate after his four-year rookie contract was up because he was a first-round draft pick. Since Kerrigan was not picked in the top 10, his fifth-year option salary is the average of the salaries of the players ranked 3rd to 25th at his position in terms of salary.
—Kerrigan’s option salary will become guaranteed on the first day of the league year, March 10 (based on the very safe assumption that the Redskins don’t withdraw the option).
—Murphy is on the second year of his four-year rookie deal he signed as a second-round pick. His cap numbers go up to $1.2 million in 2016 and $1.4 million in 2017.
—Brian Orakpo, who played on the franchise tag last year with a salary of $11.45 million, is an unrestricted free agent.
—The Redskins’ total spending on linebackers (inside and outside) is 15th in the NFL.
Adding and subtracting
After the season ended, Bruce Allen said that there is a possibility that some of the $15-$20 million in cap space that the Redskins have will be spent on an extension for Kerrigan. Historically the Redskins usually wait until a player’s contract is up before negotiating a new deal so this would be a different way of doing business. We will see if anything develops here.
The Redskins are not going to go into the season relying on Jeffcoat and Miller as their depth. They need to sign another front-line pass rusher. Should that player be Orakpo? Tarik El-Bashir and I will examine that question this afternoon on CSNwashingtton.com.
Cap information from OverTheCap.com and other sources.