Category Archives: Free Agency

Defending Super Bowl Champs Pats place 1st round RFA tender on Super Bowl XLIX hero – Malcolm Butler

Miguel Benzan
March 7, 2017 at 10:04 pm ET

Today we learned that the Patriots placed a first round RFA tender on Malcolm Butler. This blog hopes to explain the RFA tender process.

BACKGROUND:

A restricted free agent is a player with 3 or less accrued seasons at the completion of their contract. The team can choose one of three right of refusal tenders on the player. A first round tender, second round tender, or original draft position tender. Each tender has an assigned contract value amount. Another team can attempt to sign the player to a new contract, but the original team has the right to match it. If the original team does not match they will receive draft value equaling the original tender. If a team places a 1st round tender on a RFA and another team signs that player to a tender offer and the player’s old team does not match the player’s old team will get the new team’s 2017 first round pick. If a team places a 2nd round tender on a RFA and another team signs that player to a tender offer and the player’s old team does not match the player’s old team will get the new team’s 2017 second round pick. If a team places a low round tender on a RFA and another team signs that player to a tender offer and the player’s old team does not match the player’s old team will get the new team’s draft selection at the player’s original draft round. The player’s old team will not receive any draft picks if the player was undrafted.

Butler has three accrued seasons (2014, 2015 and 2016 ). His 2014 contract will reach its completion at 3:59:59 PM March 9 (the end of the 2016 NFL League Year). His 2017 salary will be $3.91 million. Butler’s 2017 salary will not be guaranteed. He will start to receive his salary during the regular season. He will earn $230,000 ($3,910,000 divided by 17 weeks). Please note that NFL players are paid during their team’s bye week.

Hopefully, that is enough background. I would now like to go over the possible scenarios.

Withdrawing the Tender before Malcolm Butler signs it:
This is by far the least likely scenario. If the Patriots withdraw the tender before Malcolm signs it, he immediately becomes a street free agent. He then could sign with any team in the NFL and the Patriots would not receive any compensation in either 2017 or in 2018. Under this scenario, Malcolm would not qualify for the compensatory pick calculations.

Waiving Malcolm Butler after he has signed the tender:
If the Patriots waive Malcolm after he has signed the tender, he then goes through the waiver process. If claimed, his new team would then become responsible for his $3.91 million salary. Until after the 3rd week of the 2017 season the waiver order is set by the 2016 record so the Browns would have top priority in claimimg any waived player. If unclaimed, he immediately becomes a street free agent. He then could sign with any team in the NFL and the Patriots would not receive any compensation in either 2017 or in 2018. Under this scenario, Malcolm would not qualify for the compensatory pick calculations.

Malcolm Butler signs tender and does not sign an offer sheet from another team:
Malcolm would then play the 2017 season with his salary being $3.91 million. He would then become an UFA after the 2017 season. He could then receive the franchise tag in 2018. The 2017 franchise tag for cornerbacks is $14.212 million. It is likely to be over $15 million in 2018.

Malcolm Butler does not sign tender but agrees to a long-term extension with the Patriots:
Malcolm would then play the 2017 season under the terms of his extension. Most recent precedent is the extension that linebacker Brandon Marshall reached with the Denver Broncos in June 2016 after receiving a 2nd round tender in March of that year.

Here is what I consider a fair deal between Butler and the Patriots. Please note that I consider him a Top 5 cornerback. Please note that if Malcolm was an UFA this offseason I would expect him to reach a deal in the 14M to 15M range.

Butler deal projection

Malcolm Butler does not sign his tender and does not sign an offer sheet from another team:
On June 15th the Patriots have the right to lower his tender offer from $3.91 million to 110% of his 2016 salary or $660,000.

Malcolm Butler does not sign his tender and decides not to show up for OTAs and the preseason:
As long as Malcolm shows up for the last six games he will obtain credit for an accrued season in 2017 and then become an UFA in 2018. Precedent – Logan Mankins in 2010. Malcolm would forgo his weekly salary – $230,000 if tender remains at $3.91 million; $38,824 if tender is lowered to $660,000. It is likely that under this scenario that the Patriots will be given some time to absorb Butler onto their 53-man roster.

Malcolm Butler receives an offer sheet from another team and signs it:
If the Patriots tender Malcolm Butler and another team signs him to an offer sheet and the Patriots do not match that offer sheet, the Patriots will receive his new team’s 2017 first round pick. If a team like the Cleveland Browns has multiple first-round picks, they must give up their assigned pick or a pick that is better than their assigned pick. If a team like the Los Angeles Rams does not have a first-round pick, they must acquire a first-round pick that is equal or better than their assigned first round pick in order to sign Butler to an offer sheet. A team like the Minnesota Vikings who does not have a first-round pick does not acquire a first-round pick that is better than their assigned first round pick they can not sign Butler to an offer sheet. The Patriots have 5 days to match the offer. The first day that Malcolm can sign an offer sheet is March 9th when free agency begins. The last day is April 21st. If the Patriots match the offer, the offer is then the contract that Malcolm plays under the 2017 season. Please note that if Butler wants to leave the Patriots he and his new team could work a trade for less than a 1st round pick as doubtful as that may be.

Who are the teams that are prohibited by the CBA to go after Malcolm?
Minnesota Vikings No 1st round pick
Los Angeles Rams No 1st round pick

Who are the teams that I doubt would go after Malcolm Butler? 
Cleveland Browns  – Draft Slot is too high to give up for Butler
San Francisco 49ers –  Draft Slot is too high to give up for Butler
Chicago Bears  – Draft Slot is too high to give up for Butler
Jacksonville Jaguars –  Draft Slot is too high to give up for Butler
New York Jets – Not enough cap space
San Diego Chargers – Draft Slot is too high to give up for Butler
Carolina Panthers – Did not sign Josh Norman to a long-term deal last year.
Cincinnati Bengals-  Draft Slot is too high to give up for Butler
Buffalo Bills  – Draft Slot is too high to give up for Butler
New Orleans Saints –  Draft Slot is too high to give up for Butler
Arizona Cardinals – Draft Slot is too high to give up for Butler and Chandler Jones franchise tag will take up space
Philadelphia Eagles – The 15th pick is not better than their original pick at 12
Baltimore Ravens – Not enough cap space
Washington Redskins-  Need is not high enough
Denver Broncos –  No Need
Miami Dolphins – Need is not high enough
New York Giants – Need is not high enough
Houston Texans – If they can’t afford Bouye, can’t afford Butler and giving up a 1st rounder
Seattle Seahawks –  Not enough cap space
Kansas City Chiefs – Not enough cap space
Dallas Cowboys  – Not enough cap space
Pittsburgh Steelers  – May not have enough cap space after tagging Bell and move does not fit modus operandi
Atlanta Falcons –  Need is not high enough

Who are the teams that may be should go after Malcolm but I doubt that they will?Indianapolis Colts – The Trent Richardson failure may prevent them from making this move
Oakland Raiders  – Have need but cap space may be taken up by Carr and/or Mack
Green Bay Packers –  Need but move does not fit modus operandi

Who are the team who could go after Malcolm?
Tennessee Titans – Have both cap Space, Need
Tampa Bay Buccaneers –  Have need and cap space
Detroit Lions  – Have both cap Space, Need

Q: What is an accrued season?
A: An accrued season is a season during which the player was at full pay status for a minimum of 6 regular season games. They player does not gain an accrued season if the player is on Reserve PUP, Commissioner’s Exempt List, or a team’s practice squad. Games on Injured Reserve do count in the accrued season calculation.

Q: How many accrued seasons does Malcolm Butler have?
A: Three

Q: How much money has Malcom Butler made in salary during his NFL career?
A: 2014 – $420,000
2015 – $510,000
2016 – $600,000
for a total of $1,530,000. This is just salary and does not include postseason pay and performance-based pay.

Q: If a team offers a contract to Malcolm Butler, in what draft (2017 or 2018) will their first round pick come from if the Patriots decide not to match?
A: The 2017 draft

Q: Can the Rams or the Vikings who do not currently have a 2017 first-round pick sign Malcolm to an offer sheet?
A: They would need to first obtain a 1st round pick that is equal or better than their original pick (Rams – 1st overall pick through the 5th overall pick; Vikings – – 1st overall pick through the 14th overall pick)

Q: What pick would the Browns who currently have two first round picks have to give up if they signed Malcolm Butler?
A: Their original pick (the #1 overall pick) and not the 12th overall pick

Q: What pick would the Titans who currently have two first round picks have to give up if they signed Malcolm Butler?
A: Their original pick (the #18 overall pick) and not the 5th overall pick.

Q: Who was the last RFA to be signed away on a first round tender?
A: Laveranues Coles in the 2003 draft. Washington signed Coles to a 7-year $35 million deal that included a $13 million signing bonus. In 2003 the franchise tag number for a wide receivers was $5.01 million so Coles received franchise player money. The Jets declined to match and then received Washington’s 1st round pick in the 2003 draft (the 13th overall). On April 25, 2003 the Jets traded the 13th overall pick to the Bears as a part of a trade to move up to the 4th overall pick to then select Dewayne Robertson.

Q: Can an offer sheet contain poison pills?
A: No.

Q: What Patriot players are contenders to be tagged in 2018 besides Malcolm?
A: Jimmy Garoppolo. Please note that Nate Solder cannot be tagged in 2018 per an agreed-upon clause in his deal.

Q: Is Malcolm Butler’s 2017 salary guaranteed like the salaries of franchise-tagged players?
A: No.

Added on March 9th:

Q: Could Malcolm Butler talk to the 31 other teams  during the legal tampering period?
A: No.

Q: Can Malcolm Butler negotiate with the 31 other teams  after 4PM March 9th?
A: Yes.

Q: Can Malcolm Butler be traded without first signing the tender?
A: No

Q: How would a trade with another team work?

A: The Patriots and the other team agree on the terms of the trade (be it Butler for a player or Butler for draft picks or some combination of the three).  Butler and other team agree to a deal. The NFLPA then approves trade. Butler signs tender. Trade is then executed. Butler and other team then executes long-term deal.

You can follow me on Twitter at @patscap

A call for a donation

A long-time family friend, my youngest sister’s best friend, was on the board of directors of a soup kitchen and food pantry in Malden, Massachusetts that provided in 2015 the equivalent of 1,030,000 meals to hungry, homeless and isolated people. I am asking that if you have found my salary cap pages useful that if you are able to do so, please make a donation to the Bread of Life soup kitchen/food pantry.

You can make a donation below by clicking on the Donate button. Please mention this website by typing in Patscap’s Drive for Five in the Purpose Field or put putting Patscap in parentheses after your name.




Please mention this website by typing in Patscap’s Drive for Five in the Purpose Field.

You can have a portion of your Amazon.Com purchases donated to the Bread of Life.
You can learn how to do so by watching a YouTube video at
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3eA-t4XxeOc

If you have any corrections, suggestion, questions, and/or comments, please feel free to ask me a question on the PatsFans.Com message board or email me at patscap at cox dot net

Please take me to the front Page of PatsFans.com.

DISCLAIMER: This site is strictly for informational and entertainment purposes, and is in no way affiliated with the New England Patriots or the National Football League. It also claims no rights to the trademarks of either the New England Patriots or the NFL

What impact will the Jamie Collins signing have on the Patriots extending Dont’a Hightower?

Miguel Benzan
January 24, 2017 at 10:42 pm ET

On January 23, 2017 the NFL.Com’s Ian Rapoport tweeted that “The contract extension for #Browns LB Jamie Collins: 4 years, $50M, source said. $26M in guarantees. Large.” It was later reported that Jamie Collins, the former New England Patriots linebacker, received $26.55 million in guarantees.

This blog will attempt to look at any possible impact on the contract negotiations between Dont’a Hightower and the New England Patriots.

BackGround:
Non-Pass Rush Linebacker Deals Ranked by Paper APY
1.) James Collins – $12,500,000
2.) Luke Kuechly – $10,708,366
3.) Navorro Bowman – $9,650,000
4.) Bobby Wagner – $8,795,485
5.) Lawrence Timmons – $8,333,333
6.) Brian Cushing – $7,949,000

Non-Pass Rush Linebacker Deals Ranked by New Money APY
1.) Jamie Collins – $12,500,000
2.) Luke Kuechly – $12,359,059 (not a coincidence that 59 is repeated. 59 is his uniform number)
3.) Navorro Bowman – $11,000,000
4.) Bobby Wagner – $10,750,000
5.) Lawrence Timmons – $9,559,150
6.) Brian Cushing – $8,750,000

As of January 23rd, Jamie Collins using the New Money APY metric is now the 4th highest linebacker in the NFL behind Von Miller ($19,083,833), Justin Houston ($17 million) and Clay Matthews ($13.2 million). Collins is now tied for the 19th highest paid defender using the New Money APY metric. Jamie Collins is now the highest paid non-pass rush linebacker in the NFL. Von Miller and Justin Houston are the only linebackers scheduled to receive more cash in the first four years of their deals than Collins.

Dont’a Hightower was drafted in the first round pick in 2012 by the Patriots. Hightower has played in 67 of 80 regular season games and 11 of 11 playoff games. The one interception of Hightower’s career occurred during the Colts game in the 2013 playoffs. Hightower has 13 defended passes, has forced two fumbles, recovered 3 fumbles, has 17 sacks and has averaged over 80 total tackles a season. Hightower is one of the four captains for the Patriots this season. Hightower is considered one of the team’s leaders. Hightower is highly regarding for his run-stuffing ability and for his ability to pass-rush when called upon. To say that Hightower is tough is an understatement. A constant presence on the injury report Dont’a Hightower has played through injuries during the regular season and has never missed playing in a playoff game. Made a game-saving tackle at the end of Super Bowl XLIX with a bad shoulder.

Dont’a Hightower is 26 years old and he will turn 27 on March 12, days after NFL free agency begins in 2017. 2016 was the option year of his rookie deal. His 2016 cap number was $7,755,875 which consisted of his $7,751,000 fully guaranteed salary and $4,875 in offseason workout bonus money.

Here are Hightower’s snap counts
2016 – 68%
2015 – 54%
2014 – 77%
2013 – 75%
2012 – 52%

Hopefully, that is enough background. Let’s look at why the Collins deal is good for the Patriots in their bid to extend Hightower.

Jamie Collins’ deal while now being the highest non-pass rush linebacker is relatively easy to top while not also overpaying Hightower. If Collins had gotten paid as a top pass-rush linebacker (17M to 19M) or as a hybrid linebacker (splitting the difference between pass-rush and non-pass rush) at around 15M to 16M surpassing that would mean paying Hightower as an elite pass-rushing linebacker which he is not. With Collins’ deal having a value of $12.5M APY a Hightower deal in the $11 to $14 million per year average range is both fair for both sides and would recognize

1.) that Hightower is one of the league’s best inside linebackers
2.) that he is closer to free agency than Wagner, Collins and Kuechly were when they signed their extensions
3.) that the cap has shown a pattern of increasing by 8% a year
4.) that the Patriots traded away Collins and not him.

Let’s take ourselves into the negotiations between Hightower’s agent and the Patriots.

Let’s venture a guess that this is the Patriots’ initial offer.
The first mirrors the Vollmer 2013 structure in that it will make Hightower as highest paid inside linebacker if he remains healthy to earn all of his incentives.  The incentives are:

1.) $250,000 Pro Bowl incentive. This would be considered LTBE (Likely to Be Earned) for the 2017 season since Hightower was an original ballot Pro Bowler in 2016.
2.) a 1 million  roster bonus payable on the 3rd day of the League year that is earned by playing 80 percent of snaps the prior year
3.) Playing-time incentives $500,000 at 70%; $1,000,000 at 75%; $1,250,000 at 80%; $1,750,000 at 85%. These incentives would be considered NLTBE (Not Likely to Be Earned) since Hightower did not play in 70% of the snaps in 2016.

* $18 million signing bonus which would be prorated over 5 years (2017/2018/2019/2020/2021)
* $1,000,000 46-man active roster bonus ($62,500 per game) to help protect the Patriots in case of injury

Dont'a 11M APY Deal

These would be the cap hits if Dont’a earned all of his incentives

Dont'a 14M APY after incentives deal

Would expect Hightower’s camp to counter with an offer whose only incentives are his 46-man active roster bonuses.

Dont'a 14M APY Deal

* 20 million signing bonus which would be prorated over 4 years (2017/2018/2019/2020)

* $600,000 46-man active roster bonus ($62,500 per game) to help protect the Patriots in case of injury

Expect the two sides to eventually come to a middle ground that has features from both sides. 5-year deal for the Patriots. Strong guarantees for Hightower. Offseason Workout Bonus for the Patriots. Bragging Rights for Hightower.

Dont'a 13M APY Deal

I polled my Twitter followers asking them “What will happen with Dont’a Hightower? If League Cap =168M LB franchise tag = 14.754M”
25% of them project Hightower to play the 2017 season under the franchise tag.
6% of them project Hightower to leave the Patriots during free agency.
42% of them project Hightower to sign a deal that is greater than Jamie Collins’.
27 of them project Hightower to sign a deal that is less than Collins’.

Q: Would the Patriots make Hightower one of the highest paid inside linebackers?
A: The Patriots made Mayo one of the highest paid inside linebackers (9.75M APY) late in 2011. The 2012 cap was just over $120 million. It is very likely that since it has been projected to be between 166M and 170M that the 2017 cap will be at least a third greater than the 2012 cap.

Q: What was the 2016 franchise tag for linebackers?
A: 14.129 million

Q: What is your estimate for the 2017 franchise tag for linebackers?
A: Close to 15 million if the League Cap is 170 million.

Q: When is the deadline to franchise tag Hightower?
A: 4PM, March 1

Q: If tagged, when is the deadline to reach a long-term with Hightower?
A: 4PM, July 15

Q: Why tag Hightower if the Patriots plan to reach a long-term deal?
A: It gives both sides more time to come to an agreement without giving another team the opportunity to sign Hightower.

Q: Is it possible that Hightower will become unhappy if the Patriots tag him?
A: Yes but a team should not negotiate out of fear. The franchise tag is a negotiating tool and teams have every right to use it. The Patriots have seen both Wilfork and Mankins verbally show their displeasure with the Patriots regarding their contracts and both later signed lucrative extensions with the Patriots. Great deal of money tends to dissipate any existing ill-well.

Q: What has happened with previously tagged Patriots during the BB era?
A: 2002 – Adam. Signed an multi-year extension
2003 – Tebucky Jones. Traded in April to the Saints for 3 draft picks.
2005 – Adam. Played the season under the tag. Left in 2006 for the Colts.
2007 – Asante Samuel. Played the season under the tag. Left in 2008 for the Eagles.
2009 – Matt Cassel. Traded with Mike Vrabel a day after free agency began to the Chiefs
2010 – Wilfork – Signed an extension a couple of weeks after being tagged
2011 – Mankins – Signed an extension in August.
2012 – Welker. Played the season under the tag. Left in 2013 for the Broncos.
2015 – Gostkowski – Signed tender in March. Reached an extension in July.

Q: What is the new money APY metric?
A: It divides the new money received by a player by the number of new years in contract. Examples = Collins is scheduled to receive $50 million over 4 years. 50/4 = 12.5 Chung signed an one-year extension in 2016. It gave him $5.7 million in new money over the 3 years (2016/2017/2018) of the new deal. Chung’s new money APY is $5.7 million.

Q: What is the paper money APY metric?
A: It divides the money received by a player by the number of years in contract. Examples = Collins is scheduled to receive $50 million over 4 years. 50/4 = 12.5M new money. Chung signed an one-year extension in 2016. It is scheduled to give him $9.9 million in money over the 3 years (2016/2017/2018) of the new deal. Chung’s paper money APY is $3.3 million. Paper money will equal New Money when the player is signing an brand new deal. The New Money APY metric is the one used to compare deals.

Q: What were the details of the Jamie Collins trade?
A: In October the Patriots traded Jamie Collins, a 2013 second round pick, to the Cleveland Browns, for a conditional 2018 fourth-round pick. The condition is that if the Browns are awarded a 2017 3rd round compensatory pick that pick will be traded to the Patriots and if the Browns are not awarded a 2017 3rd round compensatory pick the Browns will trade their assigned 2018 4th round pick to the Patriots in exchange for Collins. Nick Korte, the compensatory pick guru, projects that the Browns will get a 3rd round compensatory pick (103rd overall) for Alex Mack.

Q: What 2017 draft picks do the Patriots now have?
A:
1 Assigned
2 Assigned
3 Assigned
3 If the Browns are awarded a 3rd round compensatory pick in 2017, they will trade it to the Patriots as part of the Jamie Collins trade.
4 Patriots assigned pick. Pats will lose the 4th round pick traded to them by the Seattle Seahawks in 2016 as part of the ________ Deflategate punishment.
5 Traded to the Cleveland Browns for Mingo
5 Denver as part of the A.J. Derby trade
5 Compensatory Pick for Akeem Hicks
6 Traded to the Lions for Kyle Van Noy
7 Assigned
7 Lions as part of the Kyle Van Noy trade

Q: What Patriots linebackers are signed for the future?
A: McClellin through 2018
Ninkovich through 2017
Freeny through 2018
Van Noy through 2017
Roberts through 2019

You can follow me on Twitter at @patscap

A call for a donation

A long-time family friend, my youngest sister’s best friend, is on the board of directors of a soup kitchen and food pantry in Malden, Massachusetts that provided in 2015 the equivalent of 1,030,000 meals to hungry, homeless and isolated people. I am asking that if you have found my salary cap pages useful that if you are able to do so, please make a donation to the Bread of Life soup kitchen/food pantry.

You can make a donation below by clicking on the Donate button. I am hoping to raise five thousand dollars for the Bread of Life by the time the Patriots win their 5th Super Bowl. As of August 5th have raised $1,046. Please mention this website by typing in Patscap’s Drive for Five in the Purpose Field.




Please mention this website by typing in Patscap’s Drive for Five in the Purpose Field.

You can have a portion of your Amazon.Com purchases donated to the Bread of Life.
You can learn how to do so by watching a YouTube video at
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3eA-t4XxeOc

If you have any corrections, suggestion, questions, and/or comments, please feel free to ask me a question on the PatsFans.Com message board or email me at patscap at cox dot net

Please take me to the front Page of PatsFans.com.

DISCLAIMER: This site is strictly for informational and entertainment purposes, and is in no way affiliated with the New England Patriots or the National Football League. It also claims no rights to the trademarks of either the New England Patriots or the NFL.

Looking at the New England Patriots 2017 free agents – UFAs

Miguel Benzan
January 19, 2017 at 6:19 am ET

The New England Patriots as well as the rest of the NFL will have several free agents set to hit the market in March. Free agency will begin at 4PM, March 9th. Teams can start to release players sometime in February 8th. Released veterans can then be immediately signed by another team while players with less than 4 accrued seasons go through the waiver season.

Some basic definitions –

Accrued Season
The number of accrued seasons determines the free agency status for the player. To gain an accrued season the player must be at full pay status for a minimum of 6 regular season games. They player does not gain an accrued season if the player is on Reserve PUP, Commissioner’s Exempt List, or a team’s practice squad. Games on IR do count in the accrued season calculation.

Exclusive Rights Free Agent – ERFA
A player with 2 or less accrued seasons at the completion of their contract.

Restricted Free Agent
A player with 3 or less accrued seasons at the completion of their contract. The team can choose one of three right of refusal tenders on the player. A first round tender, second round tender, or original draft position tender. Each tender has an assigned contract value amount. Another team can attempt to sign the player to a new contract, but the original team has the right to match it. If the original team does not match they will receive draft value equaling the original tender. If a team places a 1st round tender on a RFA and another team signs that player to a tender offer and the player’s old team does not match the player’s old team will get the new team’s 2017 first round pick. If a team places a 2nd round tender on a RFA and another team signs that player to a tender offer and the player’s old team does not match the player’s old team will get the new team’s 2017 second round pick. If a team places a low round tender on a RFA and another team signs that player to a tender offer and the player’s old team does not match the player’s old team will get the new team’s draft selection at the player’s original draft round. The player’s old team will not receive any draft picks if the player was undrafted.

The minimum increase in RFA tenders is 5% while the maximum increase is 10%. If the increase in the League Cap is between 5% and 10% then the increase in the RFA tenders will equal that increase. Last year’s low RFA tender was $1.671 million. So the range for the low RFA tender in 2017 will be between $1.755 and $1.838 million. Last year’s second-round RFA tender was $2.553 million. So the range for the 2nd round RFA tender in 2017 will be between $2.681 and $2.808 million. Last year’s first-round RFA tender was $3.635 million. So the range for the 1st round RFA tender in 2017 will be between $3.817 and $3.999 million.RFAs can negotiate with other teams starting at the beginning of the League Year. The RFA tender is not guaranteed so the player can then be waived without any dead money. The deadline to sign RFAs to offer sheets is 4PM April 21st, a Friday.

Unrestricted Free Agent
A player with 4 or more accrued seasons at the completion of their contract. Unrestricted free agents are free to sign with any team as soon as they become a free agent. Unrestricted free agents become part of the 2018 compensatory picks calculation.

This look at the 2017 Patriots free agency will examine the Patriots UFAs. I had earlier looked at the ERFAs. I also looked at the RFAs The below graphic lists the 13 Patriots players who are scheduled to become unrestricted free agents (UFAs) at the start of the 2017 League Year.

UFAs

TE Greg Scruggs Greg Scruggs was signed to the Patriots roster on October 1st. Was inactive for two games before being placed on Injured Reserve on October 15th. If re-signed will probably be for a one-year deal that qualifies for the Minimum Salary Benefit treatment so that his 2017 cap number would be at its maximum $695,000.

LB Barkevious Mingo If re-signed will probably be for a one-year deal that qualifies for the Minimum Salary Benefit treatment so that his 2017 cap number would be at its maximum $695,000.

FB James Develin Expect him to be extended by the Patriots before the start of free agency. I expect the deal to be similar to the extension that Brandon Bolden signed in January, 2015. Brandon Bolden’s two-year, $2.32 million deal included a $300,000 signing bonus. Let’s bump up James Develin to $2.5M.

Proposing a James Develin

RB LeGarrette Blount The bad news for LeGarrette Blount is that he will soon turn 30 after his stellar 2016 season. Running backs tend to decline after reaching the age of 30. So I am doubtful that he will see a big payday in 2017. If Blount does come back to the Patriots expect that the maximum value of his one-year deal will be $2 million. Please note that it appears that a healthy Dion Lewis now appears to be the featured back in the Patriots 3-headed running back attack.

WR Michael Floyd Do not expect that Floyd will be signed to a deal until his legal issues are resolved. When those issues are indeed resolved it should be rather easy for the Patriots and Floyd to reach an incentive-laden deal since his 2016 stats (37 catches,  5 TDs, and 488 yards) were pedestrian.

RB Brandon Bolden If Bolden does come back to the Patriots expect the deal to be in the 1 to 1.2 million range. Bolden who played the 5th most special teams snaps on the Patriots may be an attractive free agent target for teams looking to improve their special teams.

S Duron Harmon Duron Harmon played in 48.6% of the defensive snaps and 27.7% of the special teams snaps. Harmon is the clear #3 safety on the Patriots. If another team feels that he can be a starter, expect him to leave the Patriots in free agency. Also, since Patrick Chung is due $5.9 million in cash for the 2017 and 2018 season if Harmon is looking for more money than that he will have to go to another team to do so.

CB Logan Ryan Expect Logan Ryan to leave the Patriots the first day in free agency. Logan Ryan’s resume is typical of those cornerbacks who do well in free agency so I expect him to receive offers for more money than his future value to the Patriots.

Logan Ryan’s selling points.
* Youth – Only 26 years old Logan Ryan will be one of the youngest cornerbacks hitting free agency
* Stats – Ryan has averaged over 4 interceptions, 10.5 Defended passes, and one forced fumble a season
* Durability – Ryan has not missed a regular season game since being drafted in 2013
* Winner – Teams like to sign players from winning teams.

If the Patriot decide to place the franchise tag on Logan Ryan, it will cost $14.297 million if the League Cap is $168 million. The cornerback tag cost is about 8.5% of the League Cap.

DT Alan Branch and DE Chris Long Am going to group the two together since I believe that same things will apply to both. If the Patriots do win the Super Bowl as I expect, would not surprise me if both players decide to retire leaving the game on top. If they do decide to play in 2017 consider the Patriots the heavy favorites to be the team that signs them. Would expect any deals to mirror current deals. Branch’s 2016 cap number was 2.75 million. Chris Long’s 2016 cap number was 2.5 million.

TE Martellus Bennett –  During the 2016 season blogged about an possible extension with Bennett. Since he is now closer to free agency I expect that his asking price has come up since the time I published the blog. Since Rob Gronkowski’s deal with the Patriots has a 9M APY value that is probably the maximum value for any Bennett with the Patriots. As the best available free agent tight end on the market Bennett may be able to surpass Gronk’s 9M APY. Please note that the franchise tag for a tight end is around 5.89% of the cap so if the 2017 League Cap is 168 million then the 2017 tight end franchise tag will then be $9,895,000.

DE Jabaal Sheard Trey Flowers’ emergence has made it unlikely that Sheard returns to the Patriots.

LB Dont’a Hightower –  During the 2016 season blogged about an possible extension with Hightower that did include a couple of deals that start in 2017. Please note that the franchise tag for a linebacker is around 8.75% of the cap so if the 2017 League Cap is 168 million then the 2017 linebacker franchise tag will then be $14,750,000.

Summarizing my Predictions:
Greg Scruggs – Re-signed
Mingo – Re-signed
James Develin – Re-signed
LeGarrette Blount – Signs elsewhere
Brandon Bolden – Re-signed
Michael Floyd – Re-signed after legal issues have been resolved
Duron Harmon – Signs elsewhere
Logan Ryan – Signs elsewhere
Chris Long – Either retires or re-signs
Alan Branch – Either retires or re-signs
Martellus Bennett – On odd-numbered days, I think that Martellus will be re-signed. On even-numbered days I think that he will leave.
Jabaal Sheard – Signs elsewhere
Dont’a Hightower – Tagged and then signed to a five-year deal right before the July 15 deadline.

9 of the 13 UFAs are re-signed for a total cap cost in March 2017 at around $31 million. Subtract 3 million from the total if Alan Branch retires. Subtract $2.5 million if Chris Long retires.

You can follow me on Twitter at @patscap.

A call for a donation

A long-time family friend, my youngest sister’s best friend, is on the board of directors of a soup kitchen and food pantry in Malden, Massachusetts that serves over 400 low-income and homeless families per month. I am asking that if you have found my salary cap pages useful that if you are able to do so, please make a donation to the Bread of Life soup kitchen/food pantry. Their address is

Attn: Mea Quinn Mustone
Bread of Life
54 Eastern Avenue, Rear
Malden, MA 02148
Please mention this website Patscap.Com with your donation.

You can have a portion of your Amazon.Com purchases donated to the Bread of Life.
You can learn how to do so by watching a YouTube video at
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3eA-t4XxeOc

You can follow me on Twitter at @patscap

A call for a donation

A long-time family friend, my youngest sister’s best friend, is on the board of directors of a soup kitchen and food pantry in Malden, Massachusetts that provided in 2015 the equivalent of 1,030,000 meals to hungry, homeless and isolated people. I am asking that if you have found my salary cap pages useful that if you are able to do so, please make a donation to the Bread of Life soup kitchen/food pantry.

You can make a donation below by clicking on the Donate button. I am hoping to raise five thousand dollars for the Bread of Life by the time the Patriots win their 5th Super Bowl. As of August 5th have raised $1,046. Please mention this website by typing in Patscap’s Drive for Five in the Purpose Field.




Please mention this website by typing in Patscap’s Drive for Five in the Purpose Field.

You can have a portion of your Amazon.Com purchases donated to the Bread of Life.
You can learn how to do so by watching a YouTube video at
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3eA-t4XxeOc

If you have any corrections, suggestion, questions, and/or comments, please feel free to ask me a question on the PatsFans.Com message board or email me at patscap at cox dot net

Please take me to the front Page of PatsFans.com.

DISCLAIMER: This site is strictly for informational and entertainment purposes, and is in no way affiliated with the New England Patriots or the National Football League. It also claims no rights to the trademarks of either the New England Patriots or the NFL.

Previewing the 2017 New England Patriots Salary Cap (Part 1)

Miguel Benzan
January 7, 2017 at 7:33 am ET

A couple of my Twitter followers asked for a New England Patiots 2017 salary cap preview. Please note that I have used Brian McFarland’s preview of the Ravens 2015 salary cap a template for this blog post. I decided to break up this preview so as to limit the length. Would like to prevent ice cream headaches during the middle of winter:)

These numbers were last updated on January 4, 2017.

Quick summary – The Patriots are going to have to make several difficult decisions in the next year about which young players to retain. I will presume that the 2017 salary cap will be $170 million. Given that we are about 2 months away from the start of the 2017 League Year (4PM, March 9) this preview is probably a bit premature so I plan to update this in February after the Super Bowl.

PLAYERS UNDER CONTRACT
The Patriots presently have the following 40 players under contract for 2017 (with Cap Numbers indicated):

QBs (3): Tom Brady ($14M); Jimmy Garoppolo ($1,108,513); Jacoby Brissett ($775,189)

RBs (3):  Dion Lewis ($1.4875M); James White ($789,272); DJ Foster ($540K)

WRs (4): Danny Amendola ($7,791,868); Julian Edelman ($5,750,000); Chris Hogan ($2,968,750); Malcolm Mitchell ($684,498)

TE (1): Rob Gronkowski ($6.75M)

C (2): David Andrews ($620,000); Ted Karras ($565,089)

G (3): Joe Thuney ($768,357); Tre’ Jackson ($745,935); Shaq Mason ($725,881)

OT (4): Nate Solder ($11,166,418); Marcus Cannon ($3,368,750); Sebastian Vollmer ($2,250,000); LaAdrian Waddle ($1.15M)

DE (2): Trey Flowers ($754,733); Geneo Grissom ($615,000)

DT (2): Malcom Brown ($2,076,336); Vincent Valentine ($716,355)

LBs (5): Shea McClellin ($3,283,333); Rob Ninkovich ($2.35M); Jonathan Freeney ($1,735,833); Kyle Van Noy ($1,115,741); Elandon Roberts ($565,089)

CBs (3): Cyrus Jones ($910,614); Eric Rower ($878,624); Jonathan Jones ($543,333);

S (3): Devin McCourty ($10.935M); Patrick Chung ($4.5M); Jordan Richards($1,012,241)

ST (5): Stephen Gostkowski ($4.5M) Matthew Slater ($1,612,500); Ryan Allen ($1.9M); Nate Ebner ($1.2M); Joe Cardona ($685K)

The above 40 players are under contract for a total Salary Cap commitment (which includes dead money from players no longer on the team) of $107,305,742.

Initial projections have estimated that the 2017 Salary Cap would see an increase of between $13M and $15M, moving the Cap up to between $166M and $170M.

So, using the figure of $170M for the estimated Cap, the Patriots will initially have around $62.7M in Cap space.

This will be the basis for early reports on the status of the Patriots’ Salary Cap, but it’s important to keep in mind that this number is based only on the 40 players that are presently under contract and nowhere near representative of the team’s Cap with a full roster.

So, between now and March 9th at 4:00 p.m., when the new league year begins and free agency begins, the Patriots will have a lot of work to do.

PRACTICE SQUAD FREE AGENTS (Futures Contracts)
In past years, the Patriots have usually re-signed all of their Practice Squad players to contracts for the coming year. The announcement of those signed should come right after the Super Bowl.

The 10 players currently on the Practice Squad are:

DT – Darius Kilgo
DT – Woodrow Hamilton
LB – Trevor Bates
G – Jamil Douglas
G – Chris Barker
G – Chase Farris
RB – Tyler Gaffney
FB – Glenn Gronkowski
WR – Devin Lucien
WR – DeAndrew White

Glenn Gronkowski, Devin Lucien, Chase Farris, and Trevor Bates will be signed to an one-year contracts of $465K. Based on already having a credited season in the NFL, Chris Barker, Woodrow Hamilton, Tyler Gaffney, DeAndrew White, and Jamil Douglas would receive one-year contracts of $540K. With two credited seasons, Darius Kilgo will receive an one-year contracts of $615K. The Patriots total cap commitment after signing their practice squad is $112,480,742.

2016 SALARY CAP CARRYOVER
Under the terms of the CBA, teams are now allowed to carry over excess Salary Cap space from one year to the next. As of 1/4 I am projecting that the Patriots will end the 2016 season with about $5.4 million in cap space. Add $5.4m to our League Cap Projection of $170m and we now have the Patriots adjusted cap as $175.4 million. Subtract Pats commitment of $112,480,742 from $175.4 million and we get about $62.9 million in cap space with 62 players on the Patriots 2016 roster.

INCENTIVE ADJUSTMENTS:The Patriots’ 2016 Cap will also see adjustments for incentives earned that didn’t count against the 2016 Cap (“Not Likely To Be Earned” incentives) that were actually earned and incentives that did count against the 2016 Cap (“Likely To Be Earned” incentives) but weren’t earned.

The total of these incentive adjustments are usually not disclosed until near the beginning of the 2017 league year in March. I currently project that the Patriots will get a debit of $647,500. See my blog post that tracks the Patriots incentives to see the underlying details behind this projection. Subtract $647,500 from the prior Patriots adjusted cap number of $175.4 million and we now have our final projection of the Patriots 2016 adjusted cap number as $174,652,500. Subtract $112,480,472 from $174,652,500 and we get about $62.3 million in cap space.

2011/2012 CAP ADJUSTMENT REPAYMENT: When the new CBA was agreed upon in 2011, the Salary Cap saw a reduction and, for the first few years, stagnation. Foreseeing this, the terms of the CBA allowed for teams to borrow ($3M in 2011; $1.5M in 2012) against future Caps, but forced teams to repay that amount during the 2014 through 2017 league years. The CBA left it up to the team to decide when to repay those amounts. I have been unable to determine if the Patriots borrow any cap space in 2011 or in 2012. But if they did, they will have to pay it back by the start of the 2017 League Year.

AARON HERNANDEZ: While I expect the Patriots to receive a $3.25M credit for Aaron Hernandez, I am now unsure if the credit will come before the 2017 League Year begins. I detailed why in this linked blog post.

EXCLUSIVE RIGHTS FREE AGENTS (ERFAs)
These players must be tendered contracts of the league minimum, based on the player’s length of service in the league ($615K, $540K or $465K). Once tendered, these players are fully under the team’s control and are not free to negotiate with other teams.

The Patriots have 3 players who will become Exclusive Rights Free Agents (ERFAs) after the 2016 season

TE – Matt Lengel ($540K)
CB – Justin Coleman ($615K)
S – Brandon King ($615K)

In the past, the Patriots have usually tendered all of their ERFAs who played some during the regular season. The Patriots have sometimes not tendered a player who spent the entire prior season on IR (Greg Orton – 2014 season). I go in more detail about the ERFAs in this blog piece.. Tendering their 3 ERFAs will increase the Patriots total commitment by $840,000 as Brandon King and Justin Coleman displaces players with a $465K salary from the Top 51 list while Matt Lengel’s 540K salary is now part of the Top 51 list. Our new total cap commitment number is $113,320,742. Subtract that from our $174,652,500 projection for the 2016 Patriots adjusted cap number and we get about $61.5 million in cap space.

PROJECTED ADJUSTED TEAM CAP AND RULE OF 51 SALARY CAP COMMITMENT

Based on all of the above, I am projecting that the Patriots will have an adjusted Team Salary Cap of $175.4M. The team’s adjusted Cap consists of the projected league-wide Salary Cap of $170M, plus the carryover of the 2016 excess Cap space of $5.4M (estimated), and incentive/Cap repayment adjustments (a debit amount of around $647,500).

So, for the purposes of this projection – and presenting the worst place scenario as the starting point – if the team signs and tenders all of their practice squad players and ERFAs and prior to the team making any other roster moves (releases or retirements) or the restructure of any contracts, the team will have 53 players under contract.

During the offseason, though, when rosters can balloon to up to 90 players, only the highest 51 Salary Cap numbers (and all 2016 signing bonus prorations and all dead money from released players) are counted for Salary Cap purposes.

As such, the Patriots’ estimated Rule of 51 number – again, if they sign all 10 practice squad players and tender all 3 ERFAs would be a Cap commitment of just over $113.3M

Estimates
2017 Cap – 170M
2016 Carryover – 5.4m
2016 Adjustments (-$647,500)
2016 Pats adjusted cap – $174,652,500
2017 Cap Commitment (53 players) – $113,320,742
2017 Patriots Cap Space = $61,331,758

In my next part I will look at how the Patriots will most likely use this cap space. Please note that this is the highest amount of cap space during the Robert Kraft/Bill Belichick era.

You can follow me on Twitter at @patscap

A call for a donation

A long-time family friend, my youngest sister’s best friend, is on the board of directors of a soup kitchen and food pantry in Malden, Massachusetts that provided in 2015 the equivalent of 1,030,000 meals to hungry, homeless and isolated people. I am asking that if you have found my salary cap pages useful that if you are able to do so, please make a donation to the Bread of Life soup kitchen/food pantry.

You can make a donation below by clicking on the Donate button. I am hoping to raise five thousand dollars for the Bread of Life by the time the Patriots win their 5th Super Bowl. As of August 5th have raised $1,046. Please mention this website by typing in Patscap’s Drive for Five in the Purpose Field.




Please mention this website by typing in Patscap’s Drive for Five in the Purpose Field.

You can have a portion of your Amazon.Com purchases donated to the Bread of Life.
You can learn how to do so by watching a YouTube video at
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3eA-t4XxeOc

If you have any corrections, suggestion, questions, and/or comments, please feel free to ask me a question on the PatsFans.Com message board or email me at patscap at cox dot net

Please take me to the front Page of PatsFans.com.

DISCLAIMER: This site is strictly for informational and entertainment purposes, and is in no way affiliated with the New England Patriots or the National Football League. It also claims no rights to the trademarks of either the New England Patriots or the NFL

Looking at the New England Patriots 2017 free agents – RFAs Updated on January 2, 2017

Miguel Benzan
January 2, 2017 at 11:00 pm ET

The New England Patriots as well as the rest of the NFL will have several free agents set to hit the market in March. Free agency will begin at 4PM, March 9th. Teams can start to release players sometime in February 8th. Released veterans can then be immediately signed by another team while players with less than 4 accrued seasons go through the waiver season.

Some basic definitions –

Accrued Season
The number of accrued seasons determines the free agency status for the player. To gain an accrued season the player must be at full pay status for a minimum of 6 regular season games. They player does not gain an accrued season if the player is on Reserve PUP, Commissioner’s Exempt List, or a team’s practice squad. Games on IR do count in the accrued season calculation.

Exclusive Rights Free Agent – ERFA
A player with 2 or less accrued seasons at the completion of their contract.

Restricted Free Agent
A player with 3 or less accrued seasons at the completion of their contract. The team can choose one of three right of refusal tenders on the player. A first round tender, second round tender, or original draft position tender. Each tender has an assigned contract value amount. Another team can attempt to sign the player to a new contract, but the original team has the right to match it. If the original team does not match they will receive draft value equaling the original tender. If a team places a 1st round tender on a RFA and another team signs that player to a tender offer and the player’s old team does not match the player’s old team will get the new team’s 2017 first round pick. If a team places a 2nd round tender on a RFA and another team signs that player to a tender offer and the player’s old team does not match the player’s old team will get the new team’s 2017 second round pick. If a team places a low round tender on a RFA and another team signs that player to a tender offer and the player’s old team does not match the player’s old team will get the new team’s draft selection at the player’s original draft round. The player’s old team will not receive any draft picks if the player was undrafted.

The minimum increase in RFA tenders is 5% while the maximum increase is 10%. If the increase in the League Cap is between 5% and 10% then the increase in the RFA tenders will equal that increase. Last year’s low RFA tender was $1.671 million. So the range for the low RFA tender in 2017 will be between $1.755 and $1.838 million. Last year’s second-round RFA tender was $2.553 million. So the range for the 2nd round RFA tender in 2017 will be between $2.681 and $2.808 million. Last year’s first-round RFA tender was $3.635 million. So the range for the 1st round RFA tender in 2017 will be between $3.817 and $3.999 million.RFAs can negotiate with other teams starting at the beginning of the League Year. The RFA tender is not guaranteed so the player can then be waived without any dead money. The deadline to sign RFAs to offer sheets is 4PM April 21st, a Friday.

This look at the 2017 Patriots free agency will examine the Patriots RFAs. I had earlier looked at the ERFAs.

The below graphic lists the 3 Patriots players who are scheduled to become restricted free agents (RFAs) at the start of the 2017 League Year.

2017 Patriots Restricted Free Agents

RFAs

TE Michael Williams Williams has three accrued seasons (2013, 2015 and 2016). I do not expect the Patriots to tender him. Why? His name does not appear on the Patriots roster on the Patriots website. Whenever a player on IR has not been listed on the Patriots roster he has either been waived immediately after the start of the League Year or has not been tendered. If I happen to be wrong, the Patriots will probably reach a one-year deal with Michael Williams. His 2017 salary will be $540,000. It will not be not guaranteed. If the Patriots do not tender Michael Williams, he will then become a street free agent at the start of free agency and the Patriots will not receive any compensation (2017 or 2018) if he signs elsewhere. Level of confidence that Michael Williams will not get tendered at any RFA tender level – 100% since $1.755 million is a bit much for a player coming off IR.

OT Cameron Fleming Fleming has three accrued seasons (2014, 2015 and 2016 ). I expect the Patriots to tender him at the low tender level. His 2017 salary will be between $1.755 and $1.838 million. Fleming’s salary will not be not guaranteed. If the Patriots do not tender Cameron Fleming, he will then become a street free agent at the start of free agency and the Patriots will not receive any compensation (2017 or 2018) if he signs elsewhere. If the Patriots tender Cameron Fleming and another team signs him to an offer sheet and the Patriots do not match that offer sheet, the Patriots will receive his new team’s 2017 fourth round pick. If a team has multiple fourth-round picks, they must give up their assigned pick or a pick that is better than their assigned pick. If a team does not have a fourth-round pick, they must give up a pick in the 3rd round. Level of confidence that Cameron Fleming will get tendered – 90%. My confidence level will go to 100% if the Patriots release LaAdrian Waddle before the start of free agency. I doubt that the Patriots will tender Fleming at the second or first round levels. Cap space taken up – between $1.3 million and $1.4 million because the Patriots should have 51 players with cap hits of at least $465,000 when the 2017 League Year begins. In March of 2017 we will be in the period where not everyone’s salary is counted against the cap. Only the salaries of the players with the 51 highest cap numbers will be. Given that Marcus Cannon, the Patriots starting right tackle, is not signed past the 2016 season I doubt that Fleming will agree to an extension in the early part of 2017 that does not pay him like a starter if he happens to become a starter in 2018.

CB Malcolm Butler Butler has three accrued seasons (2014, 2015 and 2016 ). I expect the Patriots to tender him at the first round tender level. His 2017 salary will be between $3.817 and $3.999 million. Butler’s salary will not be not guaranteed. If the Patriots do not tender Malcolm Butler, he will then become a street free agent at the start of free agency and the Patriots will not receive any compensation (2017 or 2018) if he signs elsewhere. If the Patriots tender Malcolm Butler and another team signs him to an offer sheet and the Patriots do not match that offer sheet, the Patriots will receive his new team’s 2017 first round pick. If a team like the Cleveland Browns has multiple first-round picks, they must give up their assigned pick or a pick that is better than their assigned pick. If a team like the Los Angeles Rams does not have a first-round pick, they must acquire a first-round pick that is better than their assigned first round pick in order to sign Butler to an offer sheet. A team like the Minnesota Vikings who does not have a first-round pick does not acquire a first-round pick that is better than their assigned first round pick they can not sign Butler to an offer sheet. Level of confidence that Malcolm Butler will get tendered at the first round tender level – 100%. There is no chance that the Patriots will tender Butler at the low tender level since that would mean not receiving any compensation back for losing a starting cornerback. I doubt that the Patriots will tender Butler at the second round levels because a 2nd round pick is not enough return for a top cornerback.  Cap space taken up – between $3.4 million and $3.5 million because the Patriots should have 51 players with cap hits of at least $465,000 when the 2017 League Year begins. In March of 2017 we will be in the period where not everyone’s salary is counted against the cap. Only the salaries of the players with the 51 highest cap numbers will be.

If given a 1st round tender Butler would be making over $230K a week or about 4M for the year. He has made about $2M so far in NFL career.

The below shows what I consider a fair deal between Butler and the Patriots. In exchange for not having to play under a RFA tender in 2017 and a franchise tag in 2018 and passing on his injury risk to the Patriots Butler receives a great deal of upfront cash in 2017 and is paid as a top 10 cornerback.

Proposing a Malcolm Butler deal

You can follow me on Twitter at @patscap.

A call for a donation

A long-time family friend, my youngest sister’s best friend, is on the board of directors of a soup kitchen and food pantry in Malden, Massachusetts that serves over 400 low-income and homeless families per month. I am asking that if you have found my salary cap pages useful that if you are able to do so, please make a donation to the Bread of Life soup kitchen/food pantry. Their address is

Attn: Mea Quinn Mustone
Bread of Life
54 Eastern Avenue, Rear
Malden, MA 02148
Please mention this website Patscap.Com with your donation.

You can have a portion of your Amazon.Com purchases donated to the Bread of Life.
You can learn how to do so by watching a YouTube video at
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3eA-t4XxeOc

You can follow me on Twitter at @patscap

A call for a donation

A long-time family friend, my youngest sister’s best friend, is on the board of directors of a soup kitchen and food pantry in Malden, Massachusetts that provided in 2015 the equivalent of 1,030,000 meals to hungry, homeless and isolated people. I am asking that if you have found my salary cap pages useful that if you are able to do so, please make a donation to the Bread of Life soup kitchen/food pantry.

You can make a donation below by clicking on the Donate button. I am hoping to raise five thousand dollars for the Bread of Life by the time the Patriots win their 5th Super Bowl. As of August 5th have raised $1,046. Please mention this website by typing in Patscap’s Drive for Five in the Purpose Field.




Please mention this website by typing in Patscap’s Drive for Five in the Purpose Field.

You can have a portion of your Amazon.Com purchases donated to the Bread of Life.
You can learn how to do so by watching a YouTube video at
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3eA-t4XxeOc

If you have any corrections, suggestion, questions, and/or comments, please feel free to ask me a question on the PatsFans.Com message board or email me at patscap at cox dot net

Please take me to the front Page of PatsFans.com.

DISCLAIMER: This site is strictly for informational and entertainment purposes, and is in no way affiliated with the New England Patriots or the National Football League. It also claims no rights to the trademarks of either the New England Patriots or the NFL

Looking at the New England Patriots 2017 free agents – ERFAs Updated on January 2, 2017

Miguel Benzan
at 8:43 pm ET

The New England Patriots as well as the rest of the NFL will have several free agents set to hit the market in March. Free agency will begin at 4PM, March 9th. Teams can start to release players sometime in February 8th. Released veterans can then be immediately signed by another team while players with less than 4 accrued seasons go through the waiver season.

Some basic definitions –

Accrued Season
The number of accrued seasons determines the free agency status for the player. To gain an accrued season the player must be at full pay status for a minimum of 6 regular season games. They player does not gain an accrued season if the player is on Reserve PUP, Commissioner’s Exempt List, or a team’s practice squad. Games on IR do count in the accrued season calculation.

Exclusive Rights Free Agent – ERFA
A player with 2 or less accrued seasons at the completion of their contract.

This look at the 2017 Patriots free agency will start off with the Patriots ERFAs

The below graphic lists the 19 Patriots players who are scheduled to become free agents at the start of the 2017 League Year.

2017 Patriots ERFAs

ERFAs

CB Justin Coleman who will be an ERFA. Coleman has two accrued seasons (2015 and 2016). I expect the Patriots to tender him. His 2017 salary will be $615,000. It will not be not guaranteed. If tendered, Justin Coleman must sign the tender in order to play in the NFL in 2017. If the Patriots do not tender Justin Coleman, he will then become a street free agent at the start of free agency and the Patriots will not receive any compensation if he signs elsewhere. Level of confidence that Justin Coleman will get tendered – 100%. Cap space taken up – $150,000 because the Patriots should have 51 players with cap hits of at least $465,000 when the 2017 League Year begins in March. In March of 2017 we will be in the period where not everyone’s salary is counted against the cap. Only the salaries of the players with the 51 highest cap numbers will be.

S Brandon King who will be an ERFA. King has one accrued season (2015 and 2016 ). I expect the Patriots to tender him. His 2017 salary will be $615,000. It will not be not guaranteed. If tendered, Brandon King must sign the tender in order to play in the NFL in 2017. If the Patriots do not tender Brandon King, he will then become a street free agent at the start of free agency and the Patriots will not receive any compensation if he signs elsewhere. Level of confidence that Brandon King will get tendered – 100%. Cap space taken up – $150,000 because the Patriots should have 51 players with cap hits of at least $465,000 when the 2017 League Year begins. We are in the period where not everyone’s salary is counted against the cap. Only the salaries of the players with the 51 highest cap numbers are.

Matt Lengel who will be an ERFA. Lengel will have one accrued season (2016). I expect the Patriots to tender him. His 2017 salary will be $540,000. It will not be not guaranteed. If tendered, Matt Lengel must sign the tender in order to play in the NFL in 2017. If the Patriots do not tender Lengel, he will then become a street free agent at the start of free agency and the Patriots will not receive any compensation if he signs elsewhere. Level of confidence that Lengel will get tendered – 100%. Cap space taken up – $150,000 because the Patriots should have 51 players with cap hits of at least $465,000 when the 2017 League Year begins. We are in the period where not everyone’s salary is counted against the cap. Only the salaries of the players with the 51 highest cap numbers are.

Why I am so confident that the Patriots will tender all of their ERFAs, as far as I can recall they have always tendered an ERFA who ended the season on the 53-man roster. The only ERFAs that have not been tendered ended the prior season on IR. The latest example of an ERFA not being tendered is Greg Orton in 2015. He spent the entire 2014 season on IR.

If the Patriots really like an ERFA, they may not tender him so that they can sign him to a deal after the start of the League Year that pay him more cash than the minimum. The Patriots once did that with Brian Tyms in 2015.

You can follow me on Twitter at @patscap.

A call for a donation

A long-time family friend, my youngest sister’s best friend, is on the board of directors of a soup kitchen and food pantry in Malden, Massachusetts that serves over 400 low-income and homeless families per month. I am asking that if you have found my salary cap pages useful that if you are able to do so, please make a donation to the Bread of Life soup kitchen/food pantry. Their address is

Attn: Mea Quinn Mustone
Bread of Life
54 Eastern Avenue, Rear
Malden, MA 02148
Please mention this website Patscap.Com with your donation.

You can have a portion of your Amazon.Com purchases donated to the Bread of Life.
You can learn how to do so by watching a YouTube video at
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3eA-t4XxeOc

You can follow me on Twitter at @patscap

A call for a donation

A long-time family friend, my youngest sister’s best friend, is on the board of directors of a soup kitchen and food pantry in Malden, Massachusetts that provided in 2015 the equivalent of 1,030,000 meals to hungry, homeless and isolated people. I am asking that if you have found my salary cap pages useful that if you are able to do so, please make a donation to the Bread of Life soup kitchen/food pantry.

You can make a donation below by clicking on the Donate button. I am hoping to raise five thousand dollars for the Bread of Life by the time the Patriots win their 5th Super Bowl. As of August 5th have raised $1,046. Please mention this website by typing in Patscap’s Drive for Five in the Purpose Field.




Please mention this website by typing in Patscap’s Drive for Five in the Purpose Field.

You can have a portion of your Amazon.Com purchases donated to the Bread of Life.
You can learn how to do so by watching a YouTube video at
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3eA-t4XxeOc

If you have any corrections, suggestion, questions, and/or comments, please feel free to ask me a question on the PatsFans.Com message board or email me at patscap at cox dot net

Please take me to the front Page of PatsFans.com.

DISCLAIMER: This site is strictly for informational and entertainment purposes, and is in no way affiliated with the New England Patriots or the National Football League. It also claims no rights to the trademarks of either the New England Patriots or the NFL

Looking at the New England Patriots 2017 free agents – RFAs

Miguel Benzan
November 19, 2016 at 9:12 am ET

Am proud to announce that my good friend Felipe Von Zuben asked me to write a weekly column for him that will be translated into Portuguese. Felipe is the one of the driving forces behind the Patriotas website. Patriotas is the official Brazilian New England Patriots Fan Club. This column will be first published here in English and Felipe will then translate into Portuguese so it will appear on the Patriotas website on Thursday

The New England Patriots as well as the rest of the NFL will have several free agents set to hit the market in March. Free agency will begin at 4PM, March 9th. Teams can start to release players sometime in February 8th. Released veterans can then be immediately signed by another team while players with less than 4 accrued seasons go through the waiver season.

Some basic definitions –

Accrued Season
The number of accrued seasons determines the free agency status for the player. To gain an accrued season the player must be at full pay status for a minimum of 6 regular season games. They player does not gain an accrued season if the player is on Reserve PUP, Commissioner’s Exempt List, or a team’s practice squad. Games on IR do count in the accrued season calculation.

Exclusive Rights Free Agent – ERFA
A player with 2 or less accrued seasons at the completion of their contract.

Unrestricted Free Agent
A player with 4 or more accrued seasons at the completion of their contract. Unrestricted free agents are free to sign with any team as soon as they become a free agent. Unrestricted free agents become part of the 2018 compensatory picks calculation if they sign with another team

Restricted Free Agent
A player with 3 or less accrued seasons at the completion of their contract. The team can choose one of three right of refusal tenders on the player. A first round tender, second round tender, or original draft position tender. Each tender has an assigned contract value amount. Another team can attempt to sign the player to a new contract, but the original team has the right to match it. If the original team does not match they will receive draft value equaling the original tender. If a team places a 1st round tender on a RFA and another team signs that player to a tender offer and the player’s old team does not match the player’s old team will get the new team’s 2017 first round pick. If a team places a 2nd round tender on a RFA and another team signs that player to a tender offer and the player’s old team does not match the player’s old team will get the new team’s 2017 second round pick. If a team places a low round tender on a RFA and another team signs that player to a tender offer and the player’s old team does not match the player’s old team will get the new team’s draft selection at the player’s original draft round. The player’s old team will not receive any draft picks if the player was undrafted.

The minimum increase in RFA tenders is 5% while the maximum increase is 10%. If the increase in the League Cap is between 5% and 10% then the increase in the RFA tenders will equal that increase. Last year’s low RFA tender was $1.671 million. So the range for the low RFA tender in 2017 will be between $1.755 and $1.838 million. Last year’s second-round RFA tender was $2.553 million. So the range for the 2nd round RFA tender in 2017 will be between $2.681 and $2.808 million. Last year’s first-round RFA tender was $3.635 million. So the range for the 1st round RFA tender in 2017 will be between $3.817 and $3.999 million.RFAs can negotiate with other teams starting at the beginning of the League Year. The RFA tender is not guaranteed so the player can then be waived without any dead money. The deadline to sign RFAs to offer sheets is 4PM April 21st, a Friday.

This look at the 2017 Patriots free agency will examine the Patriots RFAs. Last week I look at the ERFAs. Next week I will look at the UFAs.

The below graphic lists the 3 Patriots players who are scheduled to become restricted free agents (RFAs) at the start of the 2017 League Year.

2017 Patriots Restricted Free Agents

RFAs

TE Michael Williams Williams has three accrued seasons (2013, 2015 and 2016). I do not expect the Patriots to tender him. Do expect that the Patriots will reach a one-year deal with Michael Williams. His 2017 salary will be $540,000. It will not be not guaranteed. If the Patriots do not tender Michael Williams, he will then become a street free agent at the start of free agency and the Patriots will not receive any compensation (2017 or 2018) if he signs elsewhere. Level of confidence that Michael Williams will not get tendered – 100% since $1.755 million is a bit much for a player coming off IR. Cap space taken up – $75,000 because the Patriots should have 51 players with cap hits of at least $465,000 when the 2017 League Year begins in March. In March of 2017 we will be in the period where not everyone’s salary is counted against the cap. Only the salaries of the players with the 51 highest cap numbers will be.

OT Cameron Fleming Fleming has three accrued seasons (2014, 2015 and 2016 ). I expect the Patriots to tender him at the low tender level. His 2017 salary will be between $1.755 and $1.838 million. Fleming’s salary will not be not guaranteed. If the Patriots do not tender Cameron Fleming, he will then become a street free agent at the start of free agency and the Patriots will not receive any compensation (2017 or 2018) if he signs elsewhere. If the Patriots tender Cameron Fleming and another team signs him to an offer sheet and the Patriots do not match that offer sheet, the Patriots will receive his new team’s 2017 fourth round pick. If a team has multiple fourth-round picks, they must give up their assigned pick or a pick that is better than their assigned pick. If a team does not have a fourth-round pick, they must give up a pick in the 3rd round. Level of confidence that Cameron Fleming will get tendered – 90%. My confidence level will go to 100% if the Patriots release LaAdrian Waddle before the start of free agency. I doubt that the Patriots will tender Fleming at the second or first round levels. Cap space taken up – between $1.3 million and $1.4 million because the Patriots should have 51 players with cap hits of at least $465,000 when the 2017 League Year begins. In March of 2017 we will be in the period where not everyone’s salary is counted against the cap. Only the salaries of the players with the 51 highest cap numbers will be. Given that Marcus Cannon, the Patriots starting right tackle, is not signed past the 2016 season I doubt that Fleming will agree to an extension in the early part of 2017 that does not pay him like a starter if he happens to become a starter in 2018.

CB Malcolm Butler Butler has three accrued seasons (2014, 2015 and 2016 ). I expect the Patriots to tender him at the first round tender level. His 2017 salary will be between $3.817 and $3.999 million. Butler’s salary will not be not guaranteed. If the Patriots do not tender Malcolm Butler, he will then become a street free agent at the start of free agency and the Patriots will not receive any compensation (2017 or 2018) if he signs elsewhere. If the Patriots tender Malcolm Butler and another team signs him to an offer sheet and the Patriots do not match that offer sheet, the Patriots will receive his new team’s 2017 first round pick. If a team like the Cleveland Browns has multiple first-round picks, they must give up their assigned pick or a pick that is better than their assigned pick. If a team like the Los Angeles Rams does not have a first-round pick, they must acquire a first-round pick that is better than their assigned first round pick in order to sign Butler to an offer sheet. A team like the Minnesota Vikings who does not have a first-round pick does not acquire a first-round pick that is better than their assigned first round pick they can not sign Butler to an offer sheet. Level of confidence that Malcolm Butler will get tendered at the first round tender level – 100%. There is no chance that the Patriots will tender Butler at the low tender level since that would mean not receiving any compensation back for losing a starting cornerback. I doubt that the Patriots will tender Butler at the second round levels because a 2nd round pick is not enough return for a top cornerback.  Cap space taken up – between $3.4 million and $3.5 million because the Patriots should have 51 players with cap hits of at least $465,000 when the 2017 League Year begins. In March of 2017 we will be in the period where not everyone’s salary is counted against the cap. Only the salaries of the players with the 51 highest cap numbers will be.

Next week’s blog will look at the UFAs. Over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend I may also blog about extending Malcolm Butler.

You can follow me on Twitter at @patscap.

A call for a donation

A long-time family friend, my youngest sister’s best friend, is on the board of directors of a soup kitchen and food pantry in Malden, Massachusetts that serves over 400 low-income and homeless families per month. I am asking that if you have found my salary cap pages useful that if you are able to do so, please make a donation to the Bread of Life soup kitchen/food pantry. Their address is

Attn: Mea Quinn Mustone
Bread of Life
54 Eastern Avenue, Rear
Malden, MA 02148
Please mention this website Patscap.Com with your donation.

You can have a portion of your Amazon.Com purchases donated to the Bread of Life.
You can learn how to do so by watching a YouTube video at
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3eA-t4XxeOc

You can follow me on Twitter at @patscap

A call for a donation

A long-time family friend, my youngest sister’s best friend, is on the board of directors of a soup kitchen and food pantry in Malden, Massachusetts that provided in 2015 the equivalent of 1,030,000 meals to hungry, homeless and isolated people. I am asking that if you have found my salary cap pages useful that if you are able to do so, please make a donation to the Bread of Life soup kitchen/food pantry.

You can make a donation below by clicking on the Donate button. I am hoping to raise five thousand dollars for the Bread of Life by the time the Patriots win their 5th Super Bowl. As of August 5th have raised $1,046. Please mention this website by typing in Patscap’s Drive for Five in the Purpose Field.




Please mention this website by typing in Patscap’s Drive for Five in the Purpose Field.

You can have a portion of your Amazon.Com purchases donated to the Bread of Life.
You can learn how to do so by watching a YouTube video at
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3eA-t4XxeOc

If you have any corrections, suggestion, questions, and/or comments, please feel free to ask me a question on the PatsFans.Com message board or email me at patscap at cox dot net

Please take me to the front Page of PatsFans.com.

DISCLAIMER: This site is strictly for informational and entertainment purposes, and is in no way affiliated with the New England Patriots or the National Football League. It also claims no rights to the trademarks of either the New England Patriots or the NFL

Looking at the New England Patriots 2017 free agents – ERFAs

Miguel Benzan
November 11, 2016 at 6:27 am ET

Am proud to announce that my good friend Felipe Von Zuben asked me to write a weekly column for him that will be translated into Portuguese. Felipe is the one of the driving forces behind the Patriotas website. Patriotas is the official Brazilian New England Patriots Fan Club. This column will be first published here in English and Felipe will then translate into Portuguese so it will appear on the Patriotas website on Thursday

The New England Patriots as well as the rest of the NFL will have several free agents set to hit the market in March. Free agency will begin at 4PM, March 9th. Teams can start to release players sometime in February 8th. Released veterans can then be immediately signed by another team while players with less than 4 accrued seasons go through the waiver season.

Some basic definitions –

Accrued Season
The number of accrued seasons determines the free agency status for the player. To gain an accrued season the player must be at full pay status for a minimum of 6 regular season games. They player does not gain an accrued season if the player is on Reserve PUP, Commissioner’s Exempt List, or a team’s practice squad. Games on IR do count in the accrued season calculation.

Exclusive Rights Free Agent – ERFA
A player with 2 or less accrued seasons at the completion of their contract.

Restricted Free Agent
A player with 3 or less accrued seasons at the completion of their contract. The team can choose one of three right of refusal tenders on the player. A first round tender, second round tender, or original draft position tender. Each tender has an assigned contract value amount. Another team can attempt to sign the player to a new contract, but the original team has the right to match it. If the original team does not match they will receive draft value equaling the original tender. If a team places a 1st round tender on a RFA and another team signs that player to a tender offer and the player’s old team does not match the player’s old team will get the new team’s 2017 first round pick. If a team places a 2nd round tender on a RFA and another team signs that player to a tender offer and the player’s old team does not match the player’s old team will get the new team’s 2017 second round pick. If a team places a low round tender on a RFA and another team signs that player to a tender offer and the player’s old team does not match the player’s old team will get the new team’s draft selection at the player’s original draft round. The player’s old team will not receive any draft picks if the player was undrafted.

The minimum increase in RFA tenders is 5% while the maximum increase is 10%. If the increase in the League Cap is between 5% and 10% then the increase in the RFA tenders will equal that increase. Last year’s low RFA tender was $1.671 million. So the range for the low RFA tender in 2017 will be between $1.755 and $1.838 million. Last year’s second-round RFA tender was $2.553 million. So the range for the 2nd round RFA tender in 2017 will be between $2.681 and $2.808 million. Last year’s first-round RFA tender was $3.635 million. So the range for the 2nd round RFA tender in 2017 will be between $3.817 and $3.999 million.RFAs can negotiate with other teams starting at the beginning of the League Year. The RFA tender is not guaranteed so the player can then be waived without any dead money. The deadline to sign RFAs to offer sheets is 4PM April 21s, a Friday.

Unrestricted Free Agent
A player with 4 or more accrued seasons at the completion of their contract. Unrestricted free agents are free to sign with any team as soon as they become a free agent. Unrestricted free agents become part of the 2018 compensatory picks calculation if they sign with another team

This look at the 2017 Patriots free agency will start off with the Patriots ERFAs

The below graphic lists the 22 Patriots players who are scheduled to become free agents at the start of the 2017 League Year.

2017 Patriots Free Agents Tenders

ERFAs

CB Justin Coleman who will be an ERFA. Coleman has two accrued seasons (2015 and 2016). I expect the Patriots to tender him. His 2017 salary will be $615,000. It will not be not guaranteed. If tendered, Justin Coleman must sign the tender in order to play in the NFL in 2017. If the Patriots do not tender Justin Coleman, he will then become a street free agent at the start of free agency and the Patriots will not receive any compensation if he signs elsewhere. Level of confidence that Justin Coleman will get tendered – 100%. Cap space taken up – $150,000 because the Patriots should have 51 players with cap hits of at least $465,000 when the 2017 League Year begins in March. In March of 2017 we will be in the period where not everyone’s salary is counted against the cap. Only the salaries of the players with the 51 highest cap numbers will be.

S Brandon King who will be an ERFA. King has one accrued season (2015 and 2016 ). I expect the Patriots to tender him. His 2017 salary will be $615,000. It will not be not guaranteed. If tendered, Brandon King must sign the tender in order to play in the NFL in 2017. If the Patriots do not tender Brandon King, he will then become a street free agent at the start of free agency and the Patriots will not receive any compensation if he signs elsewhere. Level of confidence that Brandon King will get tendered – 100%. Cap space taken up – $150,000 because the Patriots should have 51 players with cap hits of at least $465,000 when the 2017 League Year begins. We are in the period where not everyone’s salary is counted against the cap. Only the salaries of the players with the 51 highest cap numbers are.

Woodrow Hamilton who will be an ERFA. Hamilton will have one accrued season (2016). I expect the Patriots to tender him. His 2017 salary will be $540,000. It will not be not guaranteed. If tendered, Woodrow Hamilton must sign the tender in order to play in the NFL in 2017. If the Patriots do not tender Hamilton, he will then become a street free agent at the start of free agency and the Patriots will not receive any compensation if he signs elsewhere. Level of confidence that Hamilton will get tendered – 100%. Cap space taken up – $150,000 because the Patriots should have 51 players with cap hits of at least $465,000 when the 2017 League Year begins. We are in the period where not everyone’s salary is counted against the cap. Only the salaries of the players with the 51 highest cap numbers are.

Matt Lengel who will be an ERFA. Lengel will have one accrued season (2016). I expect the Patriots to tender him. His 2017 salary will be $540,000. It will not be not guaranteed. If tendered, Matt Lengel must sign the tender in order to play in the NFL in 2017. If the Patriots do not tender Lengel, he will then become a street free agent at the start of free agency and the Patriots will not receive any compensation if he signs elsewhere. Level of confidence that Lengel will get tendered – 100%. Cap space taken up – $150,000 because the Patriots should have 51 players with cap hits of at least $465,000 when the 2017 League Year begins. We are in the period where not everyone’s salary is counted against the cap. Only the salaries of the players with the 51 highest cap numbers are.

Why I am so confident that the Patriots will tender all of their ERFAs, as far as I can recall they have always tendered an ERFA who ended the season on the 53-man roster. The only ERFAs that have not been tendered ended the prior season on IR. The latest example of an ERFA not being tendered is Greg Orton in 2015. He spent the entire 2014 season on IR.

If the Patriots really like an ERFA, they may not tender him so that they can sign him to a deal after the start of the League Year that pay him more cash than the minimum. The Patriots once did that with Brian Tyms in 2015.

Next week’s blog will look at the RFAs.

You can follow me on Twitter at @patscap.

A call for a donation

A long-time family friend, my youngest sister’s best friend, is on the board of directors of a soup kitchen and food pantry in Malden, Massachusetts that serves over 400 low-income and homeless families per month. I am asking that if you have found my salary cap pages useful that if you are able to do so, please make a donation to the Bread of Life soup kitchen/food pantry. Their address is

Attn: Mea Quinn Mustone
Bread of Life
54 Eastern Avenue, Rear
Malden, MA 02148
Please mention this website Patscap.Com with your donation.

You can have a portion of your Amazon.Com purchases donated to the Bread of Life.
You can learn how to do so by watching a YouTube video at
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3eA-t4XxeOc

You can follow me on Twitter at @patscap

A call for a donation

A long-time family friend, my youngest sister’s best friend, is on the board of directors of a soup kitchen and food pantry in Malden, Massachusetts that provided in 2015 the equivalent of 1,030,000 meals to hungry, homeless and isolated people. I am asking that if you have found my salary cap pages useful that if you are able to do so, please make a donation to the Bread of Life soup kitchen/food pantry.

You can make a donation below by clicking on the Donate button. I am hoping to raise five thousand dollars for the Bread of Life by the time the Patriots win their 5th Super Bowl. As of August 5th have raised $1,046. Please mention this website by typing in Patscap’s Drive for Five in the Purpose Field.




Please mention this website by typing in Patscap’s Drive for Five in the Purpose Field.

You can have a portion of your Amazon.Com purchases donated to the Bread of Life.
You can learn how to do so by watching a YouTube video at
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3eA-t4XxeOc

If you have any corrections, suggestion, questions, and/or comments, please feel free to ask me a question on the PatsFans.Com message board or email me at patscap at cox dot net

Please take me to the front Page of PatsFans.com.

DISCLAIMER: This site is strictly for informational and entertainment purposes, and is in no way affiliated with the New England Patriots or the National Football League. It also claims no rights to the trademarks of either the New England Patriots or the NFL

Crafting an extension with Dont’a Hightower

Miguel Benzan
October 21, 2016 at 6:33 am ET

Am proud to announce that my good friend Felipe Von Zuben asked me to write a weekly column for him that will be translated into Portuguese. Felipe is the one of the driving forces behind the Patriotas website. Patriotas is the official Brazilian New England Patriots Fan Club. This column will be first published here in English and Felipe will then translate into Portuguese so it will appear on the Patriotas website on Thursday. The basic format of this weekly blog piece will be:
1.) a recap of the prior week’s transactions.
2.) long answer to a question
3.) explain a salary cap term

Recapping the prior week’s transactions

Since I blogged about extending Martellus Bennett the Patriots
1.) placed Jonathan Freeny and Greg Scruggs on IR (Injured-reserve)
2.) Promoted Anthony Johnson and Geneo Grissom from the practice squad to the 53-man roster.
3.) Signed Tyler Gaffney and Jamil Douglas to the practice squad
4.) Released Ian Silberman from the practice squad
5.) Re-signed Glenn Gronkowski to the practice squad.
6.) Released Shaq Evans from the practice squad and signed Trevor Reilly to the practice squad.
7.) Nate Solder was active for the 5th time this year. He was active four times in 2015. Since he earned a NLBTE 46-man roster bonus the Pats lost $31,250 (the amount of his 46-man roster bonus) in cap space as a result.

Placing Jonathan Freeny did not change his 2016 cap number. The Patriots will receive a $100,000 credit on their 2017 cap because Freeny will not earn 8 LTBE 46-man active roster bonuses. Freeny’s 2017 cap number is now $1,735,833. If Freeny was active for all 16 games this season his 2017 cap number would have been $1,873,333.

Greg Scruggs’ salary was lowered from $675,000 to $403,000 after being placed on IR. His weekly salary dropped from $39,706 to $23,706. Scruggs’ cap number dropped from $555,882 to $379,882, a $176,000 savings.
Promoting Anthony Johnson and Geneo Grissom from the practice squad to the 53-man roster increased their cap numbers from $157,600 to $370,588, an increase of $212,988 each.

Re-signing Glenn Gronkowski took up $75,900 in cap space.
Signing Tyler Gaffney and Jamil Douglas took up $75,900 ($6,900 each week) each in cap space.
Releasing Ian Silberman created $75,900 in cap space.
Releasing Shaq Evans from the practice squad and signing Trevor Reilly to the practice squad took up $6,900 in cap space as Shaq Evans will get paid for this week as he was on the practice squad at 4PM Tuesday.

After these transactions the Patriots now have:
a.) 53-man roster
b.) 4 players (Michael Williams, Greg Scruggs, Jonathan Freeny and Jacoby Brissett) on IR
c.) 3 players (Sebastian Vollmer, Tre’ Jackson and Dion Lewis) on Reserve-PUP
d.) 10-man practice squad

As of 8:30 PM October 20th I have the Patriots with $9,269,424 in cap space for the 2016 season.

Crafting an extension for Dont’a Hightower

Joao Salles tweeted this question to me – “any idea of how much High and Collins will receive per year in FA? This week’s blog will look at Hightower. Next week’s blog will look at Jamie Collins.

Background information:

Inside Linebacker Deals Ranked by Paper APY
1.) Luke Kuechly – $10,708,366
2.) Navorro Bowman – $9,650,000
3.) Bobby Wagner – $8,795,485
4.) Lawrence Timmons – $8,333,333
5.) Brian Cushing – $7,949,000

Inside Linebacker Deals Ranked by New Money APY
1.) Luke Kuechly – $12,359,059 (not a coincidence that 59 is repeated. 59 is his uniform number)
2.) Navorro Bowman – $11,000,000
3.) Bobby Wagner – $10,750,000
4.) Lawrence Timmons – $9,559,150
5.) Brian Cushing – $8,750,000

Dont’a Hightower is 26 years old and he will turn 27 on March 12, days after NFL free agency begins in 2017. He is in the option year of his rookie deal. His 2016 cap number is $7,755,875 which consists of his $7,751,000 fully guaranteed salary and $4,875 in offseason workout bonus money. He has missed a total of 12 games since the start of his NFL career. He missed two games in 2012 and in 2016 while missing 4 games in 2014 and in 2015. He has played in all 16 games once (in 2013).

Before the 2016 season there were several Top 100 players rankings. Here’s how Dont’a Hightower was rated
Pete Prisco – 48th
ESPN – 99th
Pro Football Focus – 52nd
Sports Illustrated – 84th
NFL Players – Unrated

While looking for comparables for Dont’a Hightower I found two players that were close to Hightower in both age and talent level – Bobby Wagner and Luke Kuechly. Do not consider Clay Matthews a comparable  because when he signed his extension he was a pass-rushing OLB.  There is a significant difference between what top pass-rushing linebackers like Von Miller (19M APY and Justin Houston 16.8M) make and what top inside linebackers like Luke Kuechly (12.4M) and Bobby Wagner (10.75M) make.

Bobby Wagner who is 26 years old was extended by the Seattle Seahawks in August, 2015, weeks after turning 25 years old. He has been named to the Pro Bowl twice and was a first-team All-Pro in 2014 and a second-team All-Pro in 2015.

Wagner who was a 2nd round pick in the 2012 draft signed an extension that added four years to his deal so that it covered the 2015/2016/2017/2018/2019 seasons. Wagner received a $8M signing bonus. He also got a 2016 $4 million option bonus that was guaranteed. His 2015 salary was fully guaranteed while his 2016 and 2017 salaries were guaranteed for injury only and became or will become fully guaranteed early during those league years.  $2M of his 2018 salary will become fully guaranteed early in the 2018 league year. Wagner can earn up to $500,000 ($31,250 per game) in 46-man active roster bonus in 2016. Wagner can earn up to $1,000,000 ($62,500 per game) in 46-man active roster bonus in 2017, 2018 and in 2019.

Bobby Wagner Deal

Luke Kuechly who is 25 years old was extended by the Carolina Panthers in September of 2015 when he was 24 years old. Kuechly was the Defensive Rookie of the Year in 2012 and the NFL Defensive Player of the Year in 2013. Kuechly has been selected to 3 Pro Bowls (2013-2015) and been named to first-team All-Pro team the last 3 seasons (2013-2105). He won the Butkus (best linebacker) award in 2014 and in 2015.

Kuechly’s extension added five years to his deal so that it covered the 2015/2016/2017/2018/2019/2020/2021 seasons. He received a $19 million signing bonus in 2015 and a $6 million option bonus this year. He has a $400,000 workout bonus the last 4 years of the deal.

Luke Kuechly Deal

It seems reasonable to venture that a Hightower extension in the $10 to $13 million per year average range would be fair for both sides and would recognize

1.) that Hightower is one of the league’s best inside linebackers
2.) that he is closer to free agency than Wagner and Kuechly were when they signed their extensions
3.) the cap has shown a pattern of increasing by 8% a year

Below are three possible extensions for Hightower.
The first presumes that the deal is reached late during the 2016 season

* $10 million signing bonus which would be prorated over 5 years (2016/2017/2018/2019/2020)
* $8 million option bonus in 2017 which would be prorated over 4 years (2017/2018/2019/2020)
* $1,000,000 46-man active roster bonus ($62,500 per game) to help protect the Patriots in case of injury
* This deal would pay Hightower more cash in the first 3 years of the deal and in the first 4 years of the deal than Luke Kuechly.

Dont'a 11M APY Deal

This next deal presumes that the extension is reached after the end of the 2016 regular season. The APY will be higher since Hightower will have no injury risk discount to pass onto the Patriots.

* $18 million signing bonus which would be prorated over 5 years (2016/2017/2018/2019/2020)
* $1,000,000 46-man active roster bonus ($62,500 per game) to help protect the Patriots in case of injury

Dont'a 11.5M APY Deal

This next deal also presumes that the extension is reached after the end of the 2016 regular season. The 12M APY would put Hightower really close to Kuechly’s 12.4M APY.

* 20 million signing bonus which would be prorated over 5 years (2016/2017/2018/2019/2020)
* $1,000,000 46-man active roster bonus ($62,500 per game) to help protect the Patriots in case of injury

Dont'a 12M APY Deal

Q: Would the Patriots make Hightower one of the highest paid inside linebackers?
A: The Patriots made Mayo one of the highest paid inside linebackers (9.75M APY) late in 2011. The 2012 cap was just over $120 million. It is very likely that the 2017 cap will be at least a third greater than the 2012 cap.

Q: What was the 2016 franchise tag for linebackers?
A: 14.129 million

Q: What is your estimate for the 2017 franchise tag for linebackers?
A: Close to 15 million if the League Cap is 170 million.

Salary Cap Glossary

Q:What is PUP??

A: A player who fails his club’s pre-season physical at the start of training camp may be placed on the club’s Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list. A player on PUP is eligible to receive his salary, but is ineligible for games and practices; he is, however, allowed to attend team meetings. For a three (3) week period beginning with the day after the club’s 6th regular season game and ending on the day after the 9th regular season game, a player on PUP may practice with his club and/or be restored to the club’s 53 man roster (provided it is done before the day after the 9th regular season game). Note that there are two different types of PUP. Players that land on reserve-PUP are ineligible to play or practice for the first six weeks of the regular season. Players on active-PUP can be taken off the list at any point during training camp. Once a player is taken off active-PUP and returns to practice, he cannot be placed on reserve-PUP later. Please note that a player on PUP will count against the cap. Players on active-PUP count against the 90-man roster limit while players on reserve-PUP do not.

You can follow me on Twitter at @patscap

A call for a donation

A long-time family friend, my youngest sister’s best friend, is on the board of directors of a soup kitchen and food pantry in Malden, Massachusetts that provided in 2015 the equivalent of 1,030,000 meals to hungry, homeless and isolated people. I am asking that if you have found my salary cap pages useful that if you are able to do so, please make a donation to the Bread of Life soup kitchen/food pantry.

You can make a donation below by clicking on the Donate button. I am hoping to raise five thousand dollars for the Bread of Life by the time the Patriots win their 5th Super Bowl. As of August 5th have raised $1,046. Please mention this website by typing in Patscap’s Drive for Five in the Purpose Field.




Please mention this website by typing in Patscap’s Drive for Five in the Purpose Field.

You can have a portion of your Amazon.Com purchases donated to the Bread of Life.
You can learn how to do so by watching a YouTube video at
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3eA-t4XxeOc

If you have any corrections, suggestion, questions, and/or comments, please feel free to ask me a question on the PatsFans.Com message board or email me at patscap at cox dot net

Please take me to the front Page of PatsFans.com.

DISCLAIMER: This site is strictly for informational and entertainment purposes, and is in no way affiliated with the New England Patriots or the National Football League. It also claims no rights to the trademarks of either the New England Patriots or the NFL

Crafting an extension with Martellus Bennett

Miguel Benzan
October 12, 2016 at 11:48 pm ET

Am proud to announce that my good friend Felipe Von Zuben asked me to write a weekly column for him that will be translated into Portuguese. Felipe is the one of the driving forces behind the Patriotas website. Patriotas is the official Brazilian New England Patriots Fan Club. This column will be first published here in English and Felipe will then translate into Portuguese so it will appear on the Patriotas website on Thursday. The basic format of this weekly blog piece will be:
1.) a recap of the prior week’s transactions.
2.) long answer to a question
3.) explain a salary cap term

Recapping the prior week’s transactions

Since I blogged on the salary cap impact of the Patriots waiving Jonathan Cooper the Patriots released Glenn Gronkowski from the practice squad and re-signed Ian Silberman to the practice squad and signed Shaq Evans.

Releasing Glenn Gronkowski created $75,900 in cap space.
Signing Shaq Evans took up $82,800 ($6,900 each week) in cap space.
Re-signing Ian Silberman took up $82,800) in cap space.
Summing up these 3 practice squad transactions the Patriots lost $89,700 in cap space.

After the 3 practice squad transactions the Patriots have:
a.) 53-man roster
b.) 2 players (Michael Williams and Jacoby Brissett) on IR
c.) 3 players (Sebastian Vollmer, Tre’ Jackson and Dion Lewis) on Reserve-PUP
d.) 10-man practice squad.

As of 8:30 PM October 12th I have the Patriots with $9,794,138 in cap space for the 2016 season.

Crafting an extension for Martellus Bennett

.TB12 aks southpawXLIX tweeted this question to me – “do you estimate that the Patriots have the cap space for a Bennett extension?”.

The answer is yes.  Currently the Patriots have around 10 million in cap space for the 2016 season and have committed very little to future cap years.
2017 – $102 million
2018 – $81 million
2019 – $54 million

.TB12 also asked what a Bennett extension would like.

Background information: Martellus Bennett is 29 years old and he will turn 30 on March 10, a day after NFL free agency begins in 2017. He is in the last year of a 4-year $20.4 million contract. He has a total of 9 games since the start of his NFL career. He missed two games in 2009 and in 2011 while missing 5 games in 2015 after fracturing his ribs. He has played in all 16 games 5 times (2008, 2010,2012,2013, and 2014). The Patriots are mindful of the salary cap hierarchy so if extended by the Patriots Bennett should not expect to exceed Rob Gronkowski’s APY of 9 million.  When he was extended in 2012 Aaron Hernandez was scheduled to have cap numbers of 7 million in both 2017 and 2018.

Bennett is playing on a 5.1M APY deal
5M APY deal ties for 17th highest.
6M – 16th
7M – 14th
8M – 7th
9M – tied for 5th
10M – tied for 1st

While looking for comparables for Martellus Bennett I found two players that were close to Bennett in both age and talent level – Delanie Walker and Greg Olsen

Delanie Walker who is 32 years old was extended by the Titans in May. His extension added two years to his deal so that it covered the 2016/2017/2018 seasons. Walker received a $2.5M signing bonus. He also got a 2016 $1.5m roster bonus that was guaranteed. His 2.7 million 2016 salary is fully guaranteed. $1.5M of his 2017 salary becomes fully guaranteed the 5th day of the 2017 league year. He also has a $50,000 workout bonus each year of the deal and can earn up to $250,000 ($15,625 per game) in 46-man active roster bonus each year. Walker has a $500,000 roster bonus that is due early in 2018 so as to presumably force the Titans to make decision early on him.

Delanie Walker Deal

Greg Olsen was extended by the Carolina Panthers in March of 2015, a week before he turned 30. His extension added three years to his deal so that it covered the 2015/2016/2017/2018 seasons. Olsen received a $12 million signing bonus. He has a workout bonus each year of the deal ($100,000 in 2015; $250,000 the last 3 years of the deal).

Greg Olsen Deal

It seems reasonable to venture that a Bennett extension in the $7 to $8 million per year average range would be fair for both sides and would recognize that Bennett, while not the top dog on the Patriots, is one of the league’s best tight ends. A possible deal would have the following parameters:

* $6 million signing bonus which would be prorated over 3 years (2016/2017/2018)
* Fully guaranteed  2017 salary.
* $100,000 offseason workout bonus
* $400,000 46-man active roster bonus

Martellus Bennett Deal

This deal averages 8 million per year in new money over the two extended years. That 8M APY would give Bennett the 7th highest APY for a tight end.  Bennett’s 2017 and 2018 cap numbers are the same as Aaron Hernandez’s would have been.

Salary Cap Glossary

A credited season determines the minimum salary of a player with X numbers of credited seasons.
An accrued season determines when a player reaches free agency. If a player at the end of his contract has 2 or fewer accrued seasons, he will become a ERFA (Exclusive Rights Free Agent). If a player at the end of his contract has 3 accrued seasons, he will become a RFA (Restricted Free Agent). If he has 4 or more accrued seasons to his credit, he will become an UFA (Unrestricted Free Agent). A player need 6 games to get credit for an accrued season; 3 games on the 53-man roster to get credit for a credited season. Games on IR or on PUP count in the accrued season calculation but do NOT count in the credited season calculation.

You can follow me on Twitter at @patscap

A call for a donation

A long-time family friend, my youngest sister’s best friend, is on the board of directors of a soup kitchen and food pantry in Malden, Massachusetts that provided in 2015 the equivalent of 1,030,000 meals to hungry, homeless and isolated people. I am asking that if you have found my salary cap pages useful that if you are able to do so, please make a donation to the Bread of Life soup kitchen/food pantry.

You can make a donation below by clicking on the Donate button. I am hoping to raise five thousand dollars for the Bread of Life by the time the Patriots win their 5th Super Bowl. As of August 5th have raised $1,046. Please mention this website by typing in Patscap’s Drive for Five in the Purpose Field.




Please mention this website by typing in Patscap’s Drive for Five in the Purpose Field.

You can have a portion of your Amazon.Com purchases donated to the Bread of Life.
You can learn how to do so by watching a YouTube video at
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3eA-t4XxeOc

If you have any corrections, suggestion, questions, and/or comments, please feel free to ask me a question on the PatsFans.Com message board or email me at patscap at cox dot net

Please take me to the front Page of PatsFans.com.

DISCLAIMER: This site is strictly for informational and entertainment purposes, and is in no way affiliated with the New England Patriots or the National Football League. It also claims no rights to the trademarks of either the New England Patriots or the NFL.