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Old 12-04-2004   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aj.
Not trying to be an alarmist...
Hey, you managed to scare the jeebees out of me, and nothing scares ..'
Now I understand why Capers & Cass are trying to win the SB this year,
'cause there's no tomorrow for us.
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Old 12-04-2004   #22
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Originally Posted by aj.
Any prorated signing bonus accelerates to the trading teams cap for that year. The new team picks up the rest of the contract - base salary only and none of the prorated signing bonus. There still may be roster bonuses, workout bonuses, etc, in the contract that the new team has to pay.
Ok... dumb question then.... Why oh why would you ever give someone a signing bonus? Build it in thier salary and if they get traded, we dont lose anything.... Am I thinking wrong here?
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Old 12-04-2004   #23
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Why oh why would you ever give someone a signing bonus?
It's customary and it's almost become a defacto requirement. Signing bonuses are the only way a player can get any guaranteed money so it's the only way you're going to sign most draft choices and free agents to a contract. NFL contracts are not guaranteed so a team can cut a player at any time and not owe him any remaining of the base salary remaining on his contract.

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Hey, you managed to scare the jeebees out of me, and nothing scares ..' Now I understand why Capers & Cass are trying to win the SB this year,
'cause there's no tomorrow for us.
It's really not that bad. It's just not as good as its been.
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Old 12-04-2004   #24
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Originally Posted by aj.
I'll take it one step further. Our defense is getting pretty damm old. I'd venture the guess that we have one of the more veteran units in the league. Time in position for guys like Wong and Coleman is nothing but an excuse. I'll cut Robaire a little slack this year but not next. A lot of teams start rookies. We start three. Big deal. Produce. With all the vets around them, they are in a great environment to succeed. All three of them are doing pretty good already if you ask me. Earl took Eric Brown's job away from him in two starts.

Entering 2005:

Glenn 12th season
Walker 11th season
Coleman 10th season
Payne 9th season
Sharper 9th season
Wong 8th season
Foreman - if he's still here - 7th season
Smith 6th season

That's 8 of 11 defensive starters with 6 or more years of exp and 5 of those with 9 or more. Seven of the defensive starters have been here since the start. It's pretty easy to see that the core of this group doesn't have much time left together.

The offense is obviously younger than the defense. There is actually a nice mix of young and old on the offense. We are young at WR and RB and LT but again, I will be relentless in my debate against the "we are still a young team" excuse after the Cleveland game on January 2. Carr, Pitts, and Gaffney are all entering their primes next year (4th year starters) and then there's veterans like McKinney (8 yrs), Wiegert (11 yrs), Bruener (11 yrs), Wade (6 yrs), Norris (5 yrs). Yes, it takes an OL more time to gel than almost any unit on the field so I think we can expect improvement in that area next year.

Drew Brees has as many NFL starts as David Carr. He might be headed to a Pro Bowl if he keeps it up (sure, we don't have a LT but they don't have an AJ either). It's time to take off the baby booties and stop coddling these guys as if we're going to be an expansion team forever. Four or five years is a career for a lot of guys and we're entering our 4th year next year. The new Browns made it to the playoffs in 4 years so that's the benchmark as far as I'm concerned.

Look at New England's offensive front entering next year:

Graham 4th year
Ashworth 4th year
Neal 4th year
Koppen 3rd year
Hochstein 5th year
Light 5th year.

They are a younger unit than the Texans if you look at total experience. I'm sure they aren't using the "well we're still young" excuse up there today much less next year.
...outstanding post, hope everyone reads this!!!!
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Old 12-04-2004   #25
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Originally Posted by Mistril48
Yeah, I get that I messed things up by talking about this year while you were talking next.

Let me clarify (this year ie Carr is in his 3rd yr) ...

Pats drafted players. . - 1 with 2 yrs; 3 with 3 yrs and 2 with 4 yrs
Texans drafted player - 3 with 2 yrs; 3 with 3 yrs and 0 with 4 yrs

I would say we are somewhat younger and that having your QB younger is somewhat of a factor. Clearly, however, I agree that while we will have somewhat less experienced guys (the Pats young guys have playoff experience, while some of our guys were on a truly expansion team in 2002), we are arriving.
I think Brady won the super bowl when he was relatively young and unknown and no playoff experience.
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Old 12-04-2004   #26
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I still don't understand why we signed Walker to such a long contract. Just because he fill a big need at the time doesn't mean you sign him to a contract beyond what he can produce. Surely Casserly and Capers didn't think Walker would still be producing in 2008 and 2009. His contract gets huge by the last 2 years. Glenn signed a shorter contract 2 years shorter I think. Teams are asking for cap trouble when they sign older players to long term big $ contracts. Sapp was another one. I think Tampa Bay did the right thing when they didn't give in to Keenan McArdel.

AJ, great posts and great information. Thanks and much appreciation.
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Old 12-05-2004   #27
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Originally Posted by bckey
I still don't understand why we signed Walker to such a long contract.
The last 3 years on Walker's contract total $19 million. Walker & the Texans knew that those years would never be honored when they signed the contract. In essence, Walker has a 3 year $18 million contract. Had the Texans not re-signed Gary, he would have received a similar contract from another team such as the Raiders or Skins. That was the price of doing business. And every team in the league signs players to extra years in order to minimize the salary cap hits.

Glenn signed a 5 year extension back in '02. Casserly felt that Glenn would be another Darrell Green and be productive well into his 30's. But let's say the Texans were to cut Aaron this offseason and take the entire cap acceleration from the signing bonus. Glenn's net cap hit would only be $200K more than than if they keep him.

Let's take a look at some of the positives regarding the Texans cap situation. The Texans can reduce the $6 mil cap hit of Jamie Sharper in '05 by giving him a well deserved extension. If the Texans decide to keep Kailee Wong, an extension would reduce his cap hit of $4.4 million. If Seth Payne re-ups, his '05 cap hit will be considerably less than the $4.1 mil of '04. Bradford's 2.2 mil cap hit will be off the books next year. Releasing Eric Brown would save about $500K against the cap. So would cutting Jay Foreman. Not every contract is a cap killer.

I'm not suggesting that the Texan could go on a Danny Snyder-esque spending spree. I'm saying that the Texans should be in fine shape to target a free agent at a need position if they choose to do so. The Colts TE Marcus Pollard, for instance. Regardless, the Texans salary cap sky is not falling.
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Old 12-05-2004   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bckey
I still don't understand why we signed Walker to such a long contract. Just because he fill a big need at the time doesn't mean you sign him to a contract beyond what he can produce. Surely Casserly and Capers didn't think Walker would still be producing in 2008 and 2009. His contract gets huge by the last 2 years.
If you look at many of the contracts around the league you will notice that many are backloaded with ridiculous figures the last year or two of a contract. The Teams don't expect the players to reach those last years in most cases. Those years are empty numbers for the most part but help them spread out the bonus.
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Old 12-05-2004   #29
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The last 3 years on Walker's contract total $19 million. Walker & the Texans knew that those years would never be honored when they signed the contract. In essence, Walker has a 3 year $18 million contract.
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If you look at many of the contracts around the league you will notice that many are backloaded with ridiculous figures the last year or two of a contract. The Teams don't expect the players to reach those last years in most cases. Those years are empty numbers for the most part but help them spread out the bonus.
Backloaded contracts. i.e., Walker's base salary adding up to 19 million over the last three years isn't the problem. His base could add up to 50 million over the last three years for all we care -- that's not the issue because in a lot of cases, players never see that money anyway and it has no effect on the cap.

The size of the signing bonus combined with the age of the player and length of the contract (in this case $11 million prorated over 6 years for a guy who will be 36 at the end of the deal) is the problem - especially if the Texans thought Walker would not be able to satisfy the terms of the deal. If they are doing a standard proration on Walker's signing bonus, every year he doesn't satisfy on the contract costs the Texans $1.8 million in dead money on the cap. Using Lucky's example, we will 'only' realize a $5.4 million dead money cap hit from 3 years of signing bonus acceleration when he's cut on March 1, 2007 ), again that's if they are doing the standard proration of his s/b which I would expect they are but have never been able to confirm.

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Releasing Eric Brown would save about $500K against the cap. So would cutting Jay Foreman.
From what I have gathered, Brown's number next year is ~$1.71 mil. If they cut him, they will realize three years of signing bonus acceleration @ 290k per year (dead money) because he's under contract through '07. 1.71 - (3 x 0.29) = $840k savings if they cut him - which is likely IMO.

As far as Foreman, I have his number at $2.21 next year. If they cut him, they will also have three years of s/b acceleration @ 440k per year. 2.21 - (3 x 0.44) = $890k savings if they cut him - which is less likely than them cutting Brown but still a possibility.

Last edited by aj.; 12-05-2004 at 09:18 AM.
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Old 12-05-2004   #30
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another reason you see such backloaded contracts is for the Players Agents publicity. The Agent wants to be able to brag about signing 'so and so' for a $40 million contract and the only way to do that is to backload the contract extravagently, everyone knowing ahead of time that it will never 'payoff'. It helps the Agent recruit new player personnel, the player gets his guarenteed money (signing bonus) and the team gets to keep a player instead of allowing him to be a FA.

That is the reason you are going to see more and more long term contracts with huge signing bonus's, that way EVERYONE wins.
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Old 12-05-2004   #31
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AJ, Vinny, Lucky. Thanks guys. This has kind of been a salary cap 101 for me. I appreciate all the information. These contracts make way more sense now than they did by just looking at the surface.
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Old 12-05-2004   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aj.
Entering 2005:

Glenn 12th season
Walker 11th season
Coleman 10th season
Payne 9th season
Sharper 9th season
Wong 8th season
Foreman - if he's still here - 7th season
Smith 6th season

Look at New England's offensive front entering next year:

Graham 4th year
Ashworth 4th year
Neal 4th year
Koppen 3rd year
Hochstein 5th year
Light 5th year.
Pretty glaring stats there. Especially since football players playing lives are akin to dog years for the most part. Getting all the pieces in place for a big run is quite the challenge.
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Old 12-05-2004   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aj.
From what I have gathered, Brown's number next year is ~$1.71 mil. If they cut him, they will realize three years of signing bonus acceleration @ 290k per year (dead money) because he's under contract through '07. 1.71 - (3 x 0.29) = $840k savings if they cut him - which is likely IMO.

As far as Foreman, I have his number at $2.21 next year. If they cut him, they will also have three years of s/b acceleration @ 440k per year. 2.21 - (3 x 0.44) = $890k savings if they cut him - which is less likely than them cutting Brown but still a possibility.

the only problem with those numbers is your not counting the money we have to spend to replace those players. say you save $890k by releasing foreman you still have to replace him with a player for less than $890k to save any cap money for the rest of the team.

i guess you could get a young lb for around $500k but he probaly wouldnt be as good as foreman. so you get a little weaker at that position and really dont save much money.
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Old 12-05-2004   #34
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Originally Posted by markbeth
i guess you could get a young lb for around $500k but he probaly wouldnt be as good as foreman. so you get a little weaker at that position and really dont save much money.
Or you can draft a young ILB, which the Texans would likely do anyway. And I'm not convinced that replacing Foreman's impact on the team would be so difficult. And besides, that's just the savings from the '05 cap. Foreman's cap hit goes up over $3 mil in '06. He'd have to be replaced by then.
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Old 12-05-2004   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucky
Or you can draft a young ILB, which the Texans would likely do anyway. And I'm not convinced that replacing Foreman's impact on the team would be so difficult. And besides, that's just the savings from the '05 cap. Foreman's cap hit goes up over $3 mil in '06. He'd have to be replaced by then.
you got me. lets do it.
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Old 12-05-2004   #36
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Originally Posted by hetero doxy
mcnair chooses to pocket money he could spend. the texans are likely as well-off as any team in the league, if the full implications are worked out. owners who try to do everything to win incorporate rising revenues in their contracts, paying guys much more money down the line since the caps will be higher then. as one glaring example, steve mcnair is due $50 million, i believe, after either 2005 or 2006. yup- $50 million or so.
And everyone except you, including McNair the day he signed his contract, knew he would never be paid that money.
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