Depending on how you want to look at it the Redskins actually have more cap space than it appears at first glance, or they may have less.
According to OverTheCap.com, Washington has $14.33 million in cap space for 2016. They are right about in the middle of the pack, with 14 teams having more space to work with and 17 teams with less money at their disposal.
But they easily have the capability to create more cap space by releasing some overpriced veterans. In particular, it is likely just a matter of time before wide receiver Andre Roberts is released, a move that would save $3 million in cap space.
There also are some veterans who could be asked to take a pay cut. Perry Riley’s $4 million salary is in line for a starter at inside linebacker. But at the moment the starters are Will Compton and Mason Foster. Riley could be asked to cut that salary in half, which would save some cap space. Otherwise, he could be cut, a move that would save a net of $4 million.
There is also the possibility of the team and Kirk Cousins agreeing on a long-term deal, a move that likely would reduce the $19.95 million in cap space that the quarterback’s franchise tag salary currently occupies.
However, some of the remaining cap room is essentially already spent. They need about $2 million in net cap space to sign all of their draft picks. They are likely to add some additional veteran players to the roster both before and after the draft. When the season starts they will need some additional money to pay the practice squad and players who are on injured reserve.
And if they should reach an agreement on a contract extension with tight end Jordan Reed they want to have the cap space at their disposal to be able to execute it.
It can’t hurt to create a little extra cap space. The Redskins have the option of rolling over any unused cap space into 2017.