I played around with a mock offseason today making two trades and 3 renegotiations. I want to caveat up front that I am in no way a cap expert and merely did this for fun. While I did kick the can down the road some, I don't think it is overly excessive and clears enough space that we can actually do something in FA this year. The trades were Bradberry to Las Vegas for a 3rd and a future 5 and Barkley to Buffalo for a second and a future 4. I renegotiated LWill, Martinez, and Jackson. Between the trades and the renegotiations we had 57M of cap space going into free agency. I was surprised by how much cap space I was able to clear. The cap isn't as bleak as we make it out to be as space can be cleared to get OL help in FA even with just two renegotiations.
Without doing homework on FA yet I signed C Jensen, G Scherff, and T Reiff, and got a veteran Edge in Reddick. I still had plenty of room to plug holes at LB Jewell, S Kareem Jackson, CB Fuller, TE Njoku and resign Price, Carter, and Johnson to team friendly deals. If we can do anything close to this going into the draft we may be in better shape than we think going into next year. We might not get the players I selected but it isn't as if the new GM and HC have to sit back and eat this season either. I probably should have saved more in FA to pay for the draftees. Being it was the first one I am not going to dwell on it. I had the standard 5M that Fanspeak gives you plus and additional 6.8M left over.
It also allowed me to think very differently in the draft and provided the latitude to trade freely without having to answer questions about addressing the OL. I did trade 1-5 to Philly for 1-15 and 1-16. With 1-7 I took Linderbaum and with the trade I took S Hamilton and LB Dean. I was hoping Leal or an Edge would be there but they were gone. I don't see the real need for an Edge if I get Reddick though. I followed that up with LB Lloyd and G Rhyan. Our LB corps goes from one of the worst to one of the best, allows Martinez to come back at his own pace and we are protected from injury with the two rookies who will take over in two years. I added two run stuffing DL in Jones and Mathis and sandwiched Breece Hall and Isaiah Likely in between them. I ended the draft with WR Doubs, OT Rosenthal, QB Zappe, and RB Cook.
I really did this just to see how the cap played out and I probably wouldn't get some of the players at the prices they accepted (Reddick 12M; Schreff 10M; Reiff 12M, Johnson 5M) but maybe the new GM and HC are people that people players want to play for and can be persuaded to take a little less. Either way it wasn't as gloomy as I thought it would be and we could field a pretty decent team heading into the 2022 season with a few smart moves by people who know what they are doing.