NFL salary cap to exceed $132 million, giving Buccaneers $24+ million in space

USA TODAY Sports

The NFL salary cap continues to grow, and grow, and grow.

According to Pro Football Talk, the league-wide salary cap will be higher than $132 million this year. This after initially being projected at $126 million, and then again at $130 million. It may continue to grow, or it could settle down: none of these numbers are official, of course.

This is good news for every NFL team, not just the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who should have around $24 million in cap space, if ESPN's numbers on 2014 spending are correct. The Bucs are expected to create more space through pay cuts or releases, with Davin Joseph and Donald Penn being some of the most likely candidates in that respect.

The Buccaneers won't lack cap space, but the increased cap also means that free agents are likely to be more expensive. Teams have more to spend, which means more competition for top free agents, which means more expensive contracts at the top end, which means more expensive contracts throughout the system. That's how the NFL works, which means the net effect for the Bucs may not be as big as it seems.

Still, combine this with reports that the Bucs plan to fill a lot of holes in free agency, and they certainly seem likely to be very active this offseason.

One final note from that Pro Football Talk report: they note that Derrick Brooks could challenge DeMaurice Smith for the position of NFLPA executive director.

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