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The Cleveland Browns still have five games left in the 2021 season. While the odds of the team grabbing a playoff spot are not high, given their inconsistent play and difficult closing schedule, this year is still their focus.
Questions about their long-term future also linger. Whether it is deciding on QB Baker Mayfield as the team’s franchise quarterback, what to do with DE Jadeveon Clowney after one year or if they can extend CB Denzel Ward, Cleveland has some important decisions coming up.
Sunday came news that could help the team with some of their financial questions. According to NFL Network, the 2022 NFL salary cap is expected to jump to $208.2 million, a big jump from 2021:
The final number has not been officially announced, but it’s expected to be revealed at the NFL’s annual labor seminar next week.
The salary cap this season is $182.5 million — down from $198.2 million in 2020, but much higher than it would’ve been had the league and union not agreed in August 2020 to spread an anticipated multibillion-dollar revenue shortfall from the COVID-19 pandemic over several years.
The post also notes an expected jump in 2023 as well.
According to Over the Cap, the Browns would have $39 million in cap space in 2022 with the increase in cap space. The team also has two players who they could cut to save significant cap space in WR Jarvis Landry ($15.1 million) and OL J.C. Tretter ($8.25 million).
Releasing backup QB Case Keenum could also save the team $6 million in cap space.
With an increase in cap space, Cleveland could push to keep Clowney and extend Ward without worrying about hamstringing their finances for the future. That is especially true with the belief that the 2023 cap will also increase.