As it currently stands, the New Orleans Saints have approximately $9.4 million in cap space in 2020.
But could they increase that number? You must not know Mickey Loomis. Let’s look at some easy roster decisions and potential cap casualties.
The Saints could cut CB Patrick Robinson, opting to instead roll with CJ Gardner-Johnson in the slot, and save over $3.5 million. Releasing Nick Easton and choosing to use Will Clapp as the primary backup lineman would free up an additional $5 million. There are other potential cuts that could add smaller amounts to the cap - LB Craig Robertson ($2 million), Mario Edwards, Jr. ($3 million), Malcom Brown ($3 million).
Robinson and Easton free up a combined $8.5 million in cap space, bringing the total cap space to almost $18 million.
While the Saints might not opt to bring back someone like Patrick Robinson, they could try to bring back or extend other potential cuts. Cutting the injured linebacker Kiko Alonso saves almost $8 million, but the Saints could choose to bring him back with a lower cap hit in 2020. Another $11 million is freed up by cutting Janoris Jenkins, but again, the Saints could then try to bring him back at a lower cap hit.
Letting Kiko and Janoris leave only to try to re-sign both, frees up a combined $19 million. That would bring the total cap space for New Orleans to $37 million.
Although not currently under contract, Drew Brees has a roughly $16 million dollar cap hit in 2020, with a dead cap hit of over $21 million if he doesn’t play for the Saints in 2020. However, the Saints could extend Brees for at least one more playing season with additional voidable years, as they’ve done in the past, freeing up over $10 million in cap space in 2020.
That could bring the total cap space in New Orleans to $47 million.
The Saints could also extend/restructure other Saints players to free up cap space in 2020, like they did with Cam Jordan in December of 2019 to free up over $7 million in cap space. One potential option for a restructure to free up cap space would be Terron Armstead. Armstead counts $16 million against the cap this year. Assuming you could squeeze $7 million in cap space out of the Armstead contract via an extension, you’d be looking at $54 million in total cap space.
The Saints currently have $9 million in cap space in 2020. With a little speculation and Mickey Loomis magic, the Saints could have almost $55 million.