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Looking at how salary cap flexibility will work in 2011


We reported Thursday that NFL teams would have a mechanism to make it easier to keep high priced veterans in 2011.

When the league rolled out their settlement agreement (which hasn’t yet been agreed to by the players), we found out how it all work.

Teams will have roughly $3.5 million in what would otherwise be performance-based pay available to fund veteran player salaries. Teams could also “borrow” $3 million from a future salary cap that could be paid back.

The salary cap is set to be $120.375 million in 2011. Combining the two exemptions for 2011, the number really rises to $126.885. An extra $6.5 million won’t save guys that truly deserve to get cut, but it will make life easier for teams near the cap limit.

Look for plenty of teams to “borrow” from future years. With television revenue likely to rise significantly in the future, teams can feel confident the salary cap is going to rise quite a bit.

In 2012, each club can also “borrow” up to $1.5 million in cap room from a future year.