In my complete free agency salary cap update on Thursday, I predicted the league-wide salary cap for 2016 would come in at $155 million. According to NFL.com's Ian Rapoport, the NFL/NFLPA have set the salary cap at $155.27 million (an increase of $12M) for 2016. How's that for being close with a prediction!.
Source: The 2016 @NFL salary cap was just set at $155.27M.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) February 26, 2016
From my article on Thursday:
"The stable, continued growth of television contract revenues throughout the life of the current CBA ensures similar growth in the salary cap from year-to-year. In addition, the NFLPA recently won a case against the NFL (re withholding up to $120 million in shared revenue). It could add an estimated $1.5 million to each teams 2016 salary cap. With all of that in mind, I estimate the 2016 salary cap will come in at $155 million when announced in late February."
What does this announcement mean for the Rams? Again in Thursday's article, I estimated the actual amount of available salary cap space the Rams will have once the new league year (and Free Agency) opens on March 9:
The Rams will have an estimated $50.5 million in Available Salary Cap Space this offseason for re-signing their own Free Agents and/or Free Agents from other teams. If the Rams can successfully structure their new contracts without backloading them, they will likely be able to re-sign as many of their own Free Agents as desired.
My $50.5 million estimation was predicated on the NFL salary cap coming in at $155 million. One can now add an additional $270,000 to the $50.5 million.
In other related news, the league also announced the figures for the 2016 franchise/transition tags (for each position):
Values of 2016 franchise/transition tags broken down by position: pic.twitter.com/9DANCMQlLb— Field Yates (@FieldYates) February 27, 2016
The Rams may very well use the franchise tag on either Trumaine Johnson or Janoris Jenkins:
"The Rams will be using their franchise tag, according to sources, on one of their corners. To this point, they have not indicated to Trumaine Johnson or Janoris Jenkins which one of them is getting the tag, and ideally they would sign one long-term and tag the other, but even with all of their cap space that might prove impossible."
Franchise tagging either Jenkins or Johnson will not come cheaply, as the franchise tag for a CB is pegged at $13.952 million. Contrary to CBS Sports' Jason La Canfora's assertions, I believe it will be difficult but doable (not impossible) for the Rams to re-sign both players if they so desire.
The Rams should franchise tag Trumaine Johnson (and work out a long-term deal later) and work towards a long-term deal with Jenkins at the same time. We'll know shortly how all of this shakes out, as the deadline for designating franchise tag players is March 1, while Free Agency opens with the new league year on March 9.
And this just in:
#Rams are leaning toward franchise tagging CB Trumaine Johnson, sources say. A bit unexpected, but there is a lot of outside interest in him— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) February 27, 2016
with free agency approaching and him in demand, Rams CB Janoris Jenkins has changed agents and hired @schwartzfeinsod I'm told— Jason La Canfora (@JasonLaCanfora) February 27, 2016