Rookie Salary Cap Could Change Draft Strategy

January 11th, 2011

Every time Joe turns around he keeps getting hit repeatedly with the question, “What will the Bucs do in the draft?” 

Joe wishes nubile young women would approach him with such vigor.

Right now, Joe answers that question with a question: ‘What free agents have Bucs retained and/or signed?’  With a possible lockout starting in March, every NFL club could enter draft day with a pile of their own free agents unsigned and, subsequently, a lot of uncertainty. That shapes the draft game in a big way.

Then there’s the issue of the possible rookie salary cap. Might one be in place before the draft?

And if not, are owners expecting to have a rookie cap whenever the labor agreement is settled?

Joe thinks that’s a huge issue. If the Bucs don’t have to pay $40 million guaranteed for the No. 3 pick in the draft, like they did with Gerald McCoy, then Joe suspects the team would be very eager to trade up and snag the top defensive end on their draft board. 

Mark Dominik has said getting heat on opposing quarterbacks is his No. 3 priority behind having a franchise quarterback and keeping him upright — and those first two our covered well.

With the 20th overall pick, a pile of young talent and likely no desire have an overabundance of rookies again, Joe would think the Bucs would have a lot to offer someone up the draft board.

19 Responses to “Rookie Salary Cap Could Change Draft Strategy”

  1. Travis Says:

    Speaking of salary cap, if the new CBA bring about a cap like the old previous one, were going to have to throw down about 30-40 mil more on players this year than we did last year…. interesting nugget to think about…

  2. admin Says:

    Joe here,

    @Travis – Joe’s mentioned this many times. The Bucs are sitting on a mountain of cash they’ll have to spend if that’s the case.

  3. CreamsiclePasties Says:

    Just a guess but I doubt they’ll ever bring the salary cap back….the owners like not having the floor too much, and the players are too enticed (and misled) about the though of the Cowboys or Skins paying contracts like the Yankees and the Sawx.

    I do definitely believe there will be a rookie wage scale however, which will COMPLETELY change the draft. In the past you haven’t seen Safeties, Guards, Corners, etc go in the top 5 (except for a few exceptions.) The reason? Because you only pay QB’s, DT’s, or LT’s top 5 money (again, with a few exceptions.) With a rookie wage scale I think you’ll start seeing teams draft for need at the top of the draft much more so than “best player available.”

  4. BigMacAttack Says:

    Hey Joe,

    “What will the Bucs do in the draft?”

    Better yet, what will they do with all that cash? Any idea where they keep it? Just sayin.

  5. Rican Says:

    False there will be a salary cap, or else this sport wont be worth watching if teams can stack like the yankees do.

  6. CreamsiclePasties Says:

    @ Rican:

    Then why didn’t they do it this year???

  7. McBuc Says:

    Because it will be part of the entire CBA. Notice only a couple of teams went over. The owners want a salary cap and the players want a salary floor. The floor still does not protect all the players though. Most of a teams money is tied up in a hand full of players.

  8. Hire Greg Olson! Says:

    BISSACIA just took the SAN DIEGO JOB….

  9. oar Says:

    CRAP! Can I borrow your DeLorean?

  10. Guest#27 Says:

    Is Olson under contract?

    And if not, why the hell not???

  11. Hire Greg Olson! Says:


    Right after I fix the Flux Capacitor…

  12. RastaMon Says:

    I stopped reading at “nubile”…and tipped this beer to the vison of the first boy to slip his “access allowed hand” under Rachel Watson bra…

  13. SamsonSneed Says:

    Moving from #20 into the top 5 would cost so much it isn’t even feasible.

    If Kerrigan is still on the board at 17 when the Patriots pick, then sure, we might make a trade to move up 4 spots and get him….but the chances of us moving into the top 5 for a DE is laughable. We have to give up our 2nd, next year’s 1st and a top player like Aqib Talib. In other words….not happening.

  14. BigMacAttack Says:

    Hey HGOlie, that new Flux Capacitor will run off banana peels and wilted lettuce. Can you ship the Hater Twins off to Dec 21, 2012? I do appreciate it.

  15. Jerry Says:

    That’s a big deal if they re-establish a floor and put in a rookie wage scale… the Bucs are going to have to spend that money somewhere. They can do obvious things like lock up Blount long-term… but that wont be enough. If the Bucs are $30-$40 million under the floor, they will be forced to go shopping in free agency whether they want to or not.

  16. Matt Says:

    @Jerry: Or maybe they could just use that money to negotiate extensions with the guys who are going to be coming up for contracts soon (read: Talib).

  17. flmike Says:

    There may or may not be a Free Agency period this year, depending on when a new CBA is signed. If it does not get signed until mid to late July, you can probably forget about FA for this season, if it gets hammered out and signed just prior to or just after the draft, then there will probably be a FA period. If it is signed late, that just does not leave enough time for the FA period. So all those UFA’s out there will most likely get their last season’s salary with a % bump, which would be negotiated into the CBA. As for the rookie cap, that is a must from both sides. Looks like the hanging point right now is the 18 game schedule, the owners desperately want this, and the players desperately want to be fully compensated for the extra games, salary, insurance and vesting wise. It’s hard to work up any compassion for either side, this is a fight between Billionaires and Millionaires, pretty hard to pick who the loser is in the end, that is why IMHO I think this thing gets hammered right after the draft.

  18. Jamie Says:

    I disagree with you, Joe. Another draft like last year’s and we’ll have one of the most talented rosters in the league!

  19. Jamie Says:

    And also, regarding the salary cap – there was no cap this year and the teams with the highest payrolls were the Redskins and Cowboys… just sayin’ (the Bucs had the lowest in the league).