Dallas Cowboys insider
The Dallas Cowboys have kicked into high gear as they try to get under the 2013 Salary Cap by March 12.
On Thursday tight end Jason Witten, offensive guard Nate Livings, wide receiver Miles Austin, center Ryan Cook and cornerback Brandon Carr followed the lead of linebacker DeMarcus Ware and had their contracts restructured to save cap space, per multiple reports. The Cowboys also signed long snapper L.P. LaDouceur to a five-year contract.
The restructured contracts reportedly brought the Cowboys approximately $22 million in savings, which was about the amount the Cowboys needed to shave by March 12 to get under the salary cap for the 2013 league year. DallasCowboys.com reported on Thursday that the restructured contracts put the Cowboys below the cap, but did not specify by how much.
In all cases, the Cowboys converted base salaries for 2013 into bonus money, which can then be prorated over the remaining years of the contract. Technically, the players will still get paid what was intended for 2013.
This does not include any savings the Cowboys may receive from restructuring other veteran contracts, including those of quarterback Tony Romo, cornerback Orlando Scandrick and defensive tackle Jay Ratliff. All have reportedly been approached.
Carr was expected to make $14.3 million in base salary in 2013. According to ESPNDallas.com the Cowboys will convert $13.5 million of that into a signing bonus. The move will save Dallas about $11 million. Of course, it also increases Carr’s cap figure down the road and Carr is already schedule to make base salaries of $7.5 million (2014), $8 million (2015) and $9.1 million (2016).
Witten was expected to make $5.5 million in base salary. The Cowboys will reportedly take $4.56 million of his base salary and convert that into a bonus, which will save approximately $3.6 million in cap space. Witten is signed through 2017. Ware reportedly agreed to a restructuring of his base salary of $5.5 million into a bonus that will save Dallas $4 million in cap space.
DallasCowboys.com reported that Austin’s restructure would save $4 million. Austin was scheduled to make $6.3 million in base salary and would have counted $8.3 million against the salary cap.
Cook’s new cap figure wasn’t reported. But he was scheduled to count $1.25 million against the cap with a base salary of $1.1 million.
ESPNDallas.com reported that Livings’ updated deal will save about $750,000. Livings was set to count $2.4 million against the cap, with a base salary of $1.7 million. Reportedly the Cowboys will turn $1 million of that base salary into a bonus.
LaDouceur’s five-year deal includes a $600,000 signing bonus, according to ESPNDallas.com. DallasCowboys.com reported the full value of the lead as $4 million.