View Full Version : TMQ article reminds us why we are lucky

08-24-2011, 11:37 AM

One reason NFL action is so competitive is the league has a hard salary cap. The new collective bargaining agreement adds a hard salary floor, mandating that nearly all cap space be spent each year -- as cash, not as amortization of past bonuses. This is a provision NFL players are going to like quite a bit. Fans of perennial cheapskate teams will like the provision, too.

But the must-spend clause does not take effect until 2013. The result is that many NFL teams have oodles of unused cap space (http://blogs.nfl.com/?p=83848&preview=true), yet made few if any moves in free agency. The Chiefs have nearly $33 million of unused cap space. The Bucs, Jaguars, Bengals, Bills, Broncos and Browns have at least $20 million each. Another six teams have at least $10 million unused. And cap space is not cellphone minutes. It doesn't roll over to next season.

Cash flow is no problem for any of the teams with ample salary-cap space. The $125 million each NFL club will receive this season from the league's many national television contracts will cover player expenses, while ticket sales and local marketing cover overhead, and then some, even for small-market clubs. That leaves mucho grande greenbacks. Yet many NFL teams are not spending anywhere near as much as they could.

Player expense might not equate to wins, of course. But there's something more basic happening. In the NFL structure, a cheap team that loses might have more profits than an expensive team that wins. Victory is nice, to be sure, but losing cheap can be remunerative. As all NFL teams save the Packers are privately held, and of those all save the Raiders are family businesses, money that is not spent on players goes into the pockets of the owner and his relatives.


The story repeats at other NFL clubs. Revenue will be about the same whether the team wins or loses; profit will be a lot higher if salary-cap money isn't spent; family members would rather the team lose with them in cushy front-office roles than win with streamlined management. Some NFL owners go all-out to win anyway. But until 2013, there's considerable incentive to lose cheap.

Be glad the Rooneys value wins and championships.

08-24-2011, 01:05 PM
True. We could have Mike Brown as our owner. *Shudders at the thought* Thank God for the Rooney family!

08-24-2011, 01:36 PM
It's worth mentioning the role the new stadium played in all this. I know it was a bit controversial at the time, but the bottom line was PSL and luxury box money help keep a team financially healthy, and the Rooney's are still a football-first family. They don't have 40 other businesses to draw money from. When revenues increased, they turned around and spent more money on the team. I've said this before, but it is no coincidence that they drafted a QB in the early 1st round for the first time in forever a few years after Heinz Field was built.

08-24-2011, 01:52 PM
The bungles are run like a wet fart with a suprise running down the back of your leg.

08-24-2011, 02:27 PM
The bungles are run like a wet fart with a suprise running down the back of your leg.

If Brown just wants the profits and doesn't care a bit about winning, maybe he's brilliant.