The Importance Of June 1st

Many of the most important dates of the NFL offseason have already come and gone, but this Sunday represents another day that team executives around the league have circled on their calendars. Here’s a brief summary of why June 1 is important, and what we can expect starting next Monday, after that deadline has passed:

  • As we explained in a PFR Glossary entry, players released or traded after June 1 count against the cap differently than players who were cut or moved earlier in the offseason, with teams able to spread the player’s dead money across multiple years. So we could see a handful of veterans released or dealt once June 1 is behind us.
  • Several players were released earlier in the offseason and designated as post-June 1 cuts, meaning their cap hits will finally be reduced starting in June. Those players are LaMarr Woodley (Steelers; $8MM cap savings), Carlos Rogers (49ers; $6.6MM), Miles Austin (Cowboys; $5.5MM), Steve Smith (Panthers; $5MM), David Bass (Giants; $5MM), Daryn Colledge (Cardinals; $5MM), and Thomas DeCoud (Falcons; $3.4MM). Each of those teams was starting to approach the cap limit, so the new savings will give them the flexibility to lock up draft picks and possibly revisit the free agent market.
  • Speaking of free agents, June 1 represents the deadline for teams to extend contract tenders to their unrestricted FAs. If a club’s former veteran player remains unsigned, that team can make him a one-year offer worth 110% of his previous cap number (minus workout and incentive payments). For former players who were on rookie contracts, the one-year tender is worth 100% of the player’s previous base salary. Players who receive these June 1 tenders have until July 22 to sign with another team — after that date, the player’s previous team retains exclusive negotiating rights throughout the season.
  • Most free agents won’t receive tender offers, meaning they become free after June 1 to sign with any club without being tied to future draft compensation. As such, we’ll likely see an increase in veterans inking contracts, since teams will no longer have to worry that signing those players will reduce their chances at compensatory 2015 draft picks.

Details from Over The Cap were used in the creation of this post.

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