The Arizona Cardinals started their salary cap movement last week when they released linebacker Stewart Bradley and cornerback William Gay. That got them under the salary cap, which they had to do by March 12, when the new league year begins. However, the player that matters most in the salary cap is quarterback Kevin Kolb, and nothing has happened with him yet.
He is due to make $9 million in salary in 2013, plus he is due a $2 million roster bonus on March 17 and a $500,000 workout bonus. His cap hit is currently going to be $13.5 million. No one expects him to be back with the team at that number. However, nothing has happened yet.
According to XTRA 910's Mike Jurecki, as of Friday, there had not even been any talks.
What exactly does that mean? The team is already under the salary cap, but one would have to imagine they already know what they want to do with him.
On one hand, they have a few days after the new league year begins to decide what to do with him. They don't technically have to get the restructuring done before March 12. At the same time, if they do nothing, they will not be able to make a play on many players in free agency. They are about $5 million under the cap currently, but they might be using a restricted free agent tender on quarterback Brian Hoyer, and they are in contract talks with Greg Toler and Rashad Johnson. If those two are signed, all that cap space is gone.
Releasing Kolb before his roster bonus is due will save the team another $7.5 million in cap savings, although his cap hit will still by $6 million. But those savings could be used to sign as many as three free agents, as Jurecki notes.
Since the Cardinals are expected to draft a quarterback in April, the Kolb situation could go a couple of ways. My guess is that he will redo his deal as long as he is given more money up front and that he gets added security. If the team does that, then he is probably going to be the clear starter, and you actually might not see a player drafted to replace him, depending on who is available with their picks in the firs two rounds.
The other possibility is that the team has their eyes on someone on the free agent market, like Matt Moore, for example. If that is the case, Kolb will be cut, Hoyer will battle for a backup spot, the free agent will be a gatekeeper until the quarterback they draft early is ready to take over.
At this point, the lack of talks over the contract has me a little confused. I am not sure what to make of it. Other quarterbacks are redoing their deals to give their teams more cap flexibility.
Maybe it doesn't mean one thing or the other right now. I would hope that the team has made up their mind on Kolb and that they know whether he is going to be back in 2013. I tend to think that with no talks that they intend of releasing him once the new year begins.
What do you think it means, if it means anything at all?
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