Future cap situations in NFC South

There have been some draft-pick signings and contract restructures lately, so let’s take a look at each team’s salary-cap situation for future years.

At the moment, the Atlanta Falcons have the best salary-cap situation of any NFC South team for 2014 and 2015. The Falcons have $113.3 million committed toward a 2014 cap that’s likely to be a little over $120 million. They only have $61.6 million committed toward the 2015 cap. But we all know that’s going to change dramatically whenever quarterback Matt Ryan agrees to a massive contract extension. But the Falcons are positioned well to absorb the Ryan contract.

Carolina general manager Dave Gettleman did a nice job of digging out of a cap hole this year. But he’s going to have to do it again …and again. The Panthers already have $133.2 million committed toward the 2014 cap. They have $118.9 committed toward the 2015 cap with 39 players under contract. Quarterback Cam Newton isn’t one of those players. At some point, the Panthers are going to have to give Newton a new contract and that will create even more cap challenges.

The New Orleans Saints led the league in 2014 cap commitment the last time we checked. But they have dropped to second place now. They have $148.8 committed toward the 2014 cap and Dallas leads the league at $149.2. In 2015, the Saints have $130.6 million committed to 41 players. Again, that commitment is second only to Dallas ($140.4 million).

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have $124 million committed toward next year’s cap. But the good news is the Bucs are more than $18 million under this year’s cap and they’re likely to carry over most of that space to next year. The Bucs have $101.3 million committed to 36 players in 2015.