The New Orleans Saints have begun their annual cap restructuring early. Cornerback Marshon Lattimore’s contract was restructured converting $13.79M of his $15M 2024 base salary into an option bonus.
The Saints' work to get under the cap in 2024 has begun early, as the team recently converted $13.79M of CB Marshon Lattimore's $15M 2024 base salary into an option bonus, creating $11.032M in 2024 cap space.— Field Yates (@FieldYates) January 3, 2024
More work ahead, but they've begun chipping away.
This restructure raises many questions about the superstar cornerback's future with the Saints as the restructure was converted into an option bonus, not a signing bonus. An option bonus working differently in trades. Lattimore, who suffered an ankle injury in week 10, hasn’t played a snap for the Saints since.
If New Orleans is looking to move on from their All-Pro cornerback, they would have to wait until post-June 1, 2024, to save themselves $30.4M in dead money. Choosing to trade Lattimore after June 1st would defer some dead cap to 2025.
Cornerback Paulson Adebo has taken a big step up in his third year, becoming a viable option to be the Saints starting CB1. If New Orleans were to keep Lattimore, paying Adebo becomes a lot more difficult. Second-year cornerback Alontae Taylor also had a solid rookie season starting on the outside for an injured Lattimore in 2022 before being put in the slot for the 2023 season where he's struggled. Moving on from Lattimore would allow Taylor to return to his natural position on the outside.
No matter where New Orleans decides to go with Lattimore's future, a restructure was necessary for the team to get under the cap. Expect more moves like this one in the coming months.