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Steelers offer proof of escaping from salary cap hell

By Steve Corkran
Wednesday, March 7th, 2012 at 4:21 pm in Oakland Raiders.

The Raiders entered this week nearly $30 million over the salary cap, once you factor in the $6.2 million they have to account for by placing the franchise tag on strong safety Tyvon Branch. Teams have until Mar. 13 to be in compliance with the cap.
No team is in worse shape than the Raiders when it comes to the salary cap. However, it wasn’t long ago that the Pittsburgh Steelers were in an even worse situation.
Today, the Steelers are about $12 million under the projected $120 million cap. They got there by paring more than $40 million from their cap in about a month’s time.
This isn’t to say that the Raiders can follow the Steelers blueprint because the Steelers saved $14.26 million of that $40 million by cutting five aging, expensive players.
The Raiders don’t have many of those kinds of players, with weighty contracts, on their roster, with the possible exceptions of defensive tackle John Henderson ($4 million salary), cornerback Chris Johnson ($3.5 million) and safety Hiram Eugene ($2.5).
Therefore, they will have to rely upon restructuring the contracts of starting players such as quarterback Carson Palmer, defensive tackles Richard Seymour and Tommy Kelly, outside linebacker Kamerion Wimbley and wide receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey.
The Steelers saved more than $25 million by restructuring the contracts of five players — Ben Roethlisberger, LaMarr Woodley, Lawrence Timmons, Willie Colon and Ike Taylor.
The aforementioned Raiders players with sizable contracts for 2012 can restructure in ways that could save the Raiders most of what they need to save between now and the 13th.
As of Tuesday night, the Raiders had yet to submit any restructures to the league office. General manager Reggie McKenzie is spearheading the heavy lifting in terms of reworking contracts, and he isn’t sharing any of his notes.
Suffice, McKenzie will prevail upon a handful of players with sizable contracts that they need to help out right away, in exchange for a little extra spending cash down the road.
Wimbley will be the toughest one for McKenzie to iron out, given Wimbley is guaranteed $6.5 million of his $11 million salary for 2012, and he stands to recoup the $4.5 million difference, and thensome, if he balks at a restructure, gets released and hits free agency.
The good news for the Raiders is, they still have time. All they need now is cooperation from their players. Before long, the Raiders will be just like the Steelers, under the cap and ready to spend again.

Follow me on Twitter: @corkonthenfl

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  • SnB offense defense specialteams

    JFB,

    Yup, having Bruce on the team last year would have given the Raiders a lot more flexibility this year…but Hue gambled with House money and we have what we have.

    Salary cap means everything. There will be no significant free agen signings this year because of all the overpaid, no production check cashers on the roster.

    2013 will be the year to fix the roster

  • http://raiders.com Mark Clemens

    Broncos going to get Manning, Chargers – Mario Williams, looks like we screwed.

  • http://raiders.com Mark Clemens

    True, Elway wants Manning just so he can dump Tebow.

  • http://raiders.com Mark Clemens

    Jerry McDonald ‏ @Jerrymcd Reply Retweet Favorite · Open
    Raider fans crack me up. Never want the kind of competition Al Davis used to crave. Don’t have a `bring it on’ mentality.’ Beat the best.

  • J Hill

    I hope Michael Huff has taken a pay cut. He is not worth anywhere near the $8 million+

    ———————————————————

    Where do you see that he took a paycut?

    You’re not counting the bonus money he gets paid right now?

  • http://www.raiders.com Raider O

    Vegas,

    I was trying to watch it from my phone, but it’s not working. Like I told B, I will watch it from a pc when I get a chance.

  • http://raiders.com Mark Clemens

    Video don’t work on PC either. I was really hoping to see what Brien looks like.

  • J Hill

    Newsflash ….

    The Raiders are going to win the AFC West next season.

    Our defense has already been fixed by simply adding decent chess players to that side of the ball with up to date plans of attack.

    McKenzie obviously wants Wimbley back since he has yet to be cut. He’s trying to work something out, not hurry up and put him on the scrap heap.

  • J Hill

    I just watched it with no problem.

  • http://www.raiders.com Raider O

    Mark Clemens Says:
    March 7th, 2012 at 7:59 pm
    Video don’t work on PC either. I was really hoping to see what Brien looks like.
    $$$$$$$$$$$
    So how did Vegas and others watch this mystery video?

  • J Hill

    Kobe is KILLING the Lakers.

    Yukkity Yuk Yuk!!!!!!!!

  • 8RaiderReign8

    Just Fire Baby Says:
    March 7th, 2012 at 7:22 pm
    Was the dirt still on the field for the Browns game?
    ___________________

    That’s where Campbell broke his collarbone

  • http://raiders.com Mark Clemens

    J Hill Says:
    March 7th, 2012 at 8:01 pm
    I just watched it with no problem.
    ——–
    link?

  • http://raiders.com Mark Clemens

    It might be working now.

  • http://www.raiders.com Raider O

    MC,

    I just tried it again, and its not working for me.

  • http://www.raiderettes.com Sullivan44

    lol. You guys are hilarious. “B” doesn’t exist.

  • http://raiders.com Mark Clemens

    I didn’t see Brien. Was he the old guy with the microphone?

  • http://raiders.com Mark Clemens

    Sullivan44 Says:
    March 7th, 2012 at 8:09 pm
    lol. You guys are hilarious. “B” doesn’t exist.
    ———
    Is that because you are Brien?

  • http://www.raiders.com Raider O

    I didn’t see Brien. Was he the old guy with the microphone?
    $$$$$$$$$$

    Did you watch it? What did you do to get it to work?

  • http://raiders.com Mark Clemens

    Raider O, it just started working.

  • http://www.raiders.com Raider O

    New post.
    Thx MC.

  • downsouthraider

    Manning going to MIA. He wouldn’t hold up in frigid weather in Denver with that brittle neck. CODE BLACK!

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  • RaiderSam

    ok you are taking your palmer worship to an insane level.

    Palmer cant even be mentioned in the same breath as manning?!?!?!?!

    WOW!!! manning is a first ballot hall of fame player super bowl champion and perennial playoff contender.

    Palmer???? not even qualified for th bungles hall of fame, lloking up at ken anderson and boomer esiason.

    anybody that says palmer is in the same class a s manning needs help in the worst way.

    LAUGHABLE

    ============

    No, whats laughable is thinking the Raiders could even afford Manning – i understand “making the attempt”, but why bother when there are so many other positions to fill and cap space to clear. Redskins, Seahawks, Cardinals have the money to spend. KC has 60 mil in avail cap space

  • RaiderSam

    Mark Clemens Says:
    March 7th, 2012 at 7:45 pm
    Broncos going to get Manning, Chargers – Mario Williams, looks like we screwed.

    ======
    Who was the d-back coordinator when the Saints beat the Colts and Manning? What happened to Manning ? a Pick 6 by T.Porter to ice the game.

    lighten up, Chicken Little.

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