Saints salary cap impact of signing free agent tight end Foster Moreau

What’s the New Orleans Saints salary cap impact of signing free agent tight end Foster Moreau? His contract structure is awful clever. ESPN’s Field Yates reports that Moreau’s 2023 base salary (set at $1.1 million, the veteran minimum) is guaranteed, as is his $3.5 million signing bonus. Because the Saints tacked on two automatically-voiding “ghost years” at the end of his three-year deal to further spread out the cap hits from that signing bonus, his 2023 cap hit is really just $1.8 million.

But wait, there’s more. Because the Saints already had 51 contracts on the books, signing Moreau pushed a smaller deal down beneath the threshold that counts against the cap right now, for a net cost of about $860,000. That’s a deal you make seven days of the week to get a starting-quality tight end. It leaves the Saints with more than $15 million in salary cap space, though signing their rookie draft class will push them down to about $12 million. That’s a lot of resources to work with.

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Moreau’s contract has been reported to carry $8 million in total guarantees, so the remaining $3.4 million (not counting his signing bonus and 2023 salary) is probably tied up in his 2024 salary and a roster bonus which the Saints can convert into another signing bonus next offseason. It includes another non-guaranteed $3 million of incentives he can earn back through playtime and performance, which should be attainable once he’s fully recovered from treatment for Hodgkin’s lymphoma earlier this year.


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Story originally appeared on Saints Wire