The Titans and the Salary Cap - A Guesstimation

In light of the Chris Johnson holdout, and the repeated calls for "pay da man" issued from the fan base, I thought it might be worthwhile to take a look at where the Titans actually stand in regards to the 2011 salary cap.  If you want to pay CJ, shouldn't you know if it's possible?

I gathered most of the data from  There you can find the most up-to-date contract info for all NFL clubs.  There are a number of players, all recent free agent signings, for which the actual contract numbers aren't available, so the numbers are subject to change.  Also, a number of low round draft picks don't have actual numbers, but they are guaranteed to all be real close and small.

I made a big nasty spreadsheet with everyone, but it is rather pointless given that a lot of the guys listed are not going to make the team.  So, let me just list our Top 20 cap eaters:

  • Figures are in millions of cap dollars for 2011, so they include prorated signing bonuses, etc
  • Percentages are percent of 2011 cap, based on a $120m hard cap.
 1 Roos,M		$6.83	5.69%
2 Hope, C $6.50 5.42%
3 Stewart, D  $6.50 4.58%
4 Hasselbeck, M $5.00 4.17%
5 Washington, N $4.80 4.00%
6 Scott, J $4.70 3.92%
7 Haye, J $4.25 3.54%
8 Witherspoon, W $4.17 3.47%
9 Amano, E $4.13 3.44%
10 Ruud, B $4.00 3.33%
11 Finnegan, C $3.79 3.16%
12 Bironas, R $3.65 3.04%
13 Gage, J $3.50 2.92%
14 Griffin, M $3.31 2.76%
15 Smith, S $3.25 2.71%
16 Locker, J $3.15 2.62%
17 Graham, D $2.83 2.36%
18 Morgan, D $2.61 2.17%
19 Fuller, V $2.06 1.72%
20 Britt, K $1.88 1.57%
TOP 20 TOTAL $67.38 56.15%
EVERYONE ELSE $43.90 36.58%
TOTAL APPROX $111.28 92.73%

From this you can see who our top-paid players are, and how much cap they take up relative to the total team salary cap.  The number is approximate since:

  1. Some contract details might not be exactly right.
  2. I don't know if we take a hit for releasing VY.
  3. A lot of the guys that are bundled up in "everyone else" won't be on the team, and their cap #'s will be irrelevant.  This includes CJ.  Given a new deal, his current cap number ($1.04 @ 0.86%) won't matter.

Interesting tidbits:

  • While Roos has the highest cap number, this is due to a large signing bonus being prorated over his contract.  His base salary is only $5m.
  • Chris Hope is the highest paid player on the Titans, by over $1m dollars.  His 2011 base salary is $6m and is cap amount is larger due to a roster bonus.  For nothing more than inflammatory tendencies, that amounts to over 8 times CJs currently contracted salary. ;)
  • There are a number of Top 20 cap eaters that may in fact not make the team.  These include fan favorites such as: Chris Hope, Jovan Haye, and Justin Gage.  Those 3 alone account for over %12 of the total team cap amounts.
  • A large number of players are entering the last year of their contracts.  For example:  Griffin, Scott, Finnegan, Fuller, and Stevens (there are more)
  • And last but not least, there is plenty of cap space available to give CJ a large contract, especially if heavily front loaded in bonus, and back-loaded in salary.   Of course availability of large upfront money is dependant on the Titans's bank account, and I don't know it's status.   This doesn't mean I necessarily support giving CJ everything possible, just that "cap considerations" aren't really a good excuse to avoiding doing a deal with CJ.

If you think numbers are boring, sorry.  If not, I hope this shed at least a little light on the whole "wher be our moneyz!!?!"

Log In Sign Up

Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Music City Miracles

You must be a member of Music City Miracles to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Music City Miracles. You should read them.

Join Music City Miracles

You must be a member of Music City Miracles to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Music City Miracles. You should read them.




Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.