The New England Patriots will use up a good chunk of salary cap space in 2020 on players who will not play for them.
The salary cap for next season is set at $198.2 million, which is a $10 million increase from 2019.
According to OverTheCap.com, the Patriots currently have the third-most dead money in the league for the 2020 campaign.
#NFL dead money leaders in 2020 (doesnt include June 1 cuts)— Jason_OTC (@Jason_OTC) March 24, 2020
1. Panthers- $36.5M
2. Jaguars- $34M
3. Patriots- $26M
4. Lions- $20.4M
5. Vikings- $20.4M
6. Dolphins- $20.2M
7. Ravens- $16.8M
8. Broncos- $16M
9. Eagles- $15.4M
10. Falcons- $13.1M
The largest chunk of this dead money is the $13.5 million for quarterback Tom Brady. The six-time Super Bowl champion left the Patriots last week to sign with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in NFL free agency. The second-largest dead money figure is the $4.5 million devoted to wide receiver Antonio Brown, who was released by the Patriots in September after playing in only one game for New England.
Managing the cap could be difficult for the Patriots during the upcoming campaign, but their salary structure should be much improved for the 2021 season. New England is projected to have around $100 million in cap space in 2021, per OverTheCap.com, which would give the Patriots a great opportunity to reset their roster for the post-Brady era.