NFL revenue continues to rise and, in turn, the salary cap continues to climb. On Tuesday, the league office informed club officials that the salary cap is projected fall somewhere between $196.8MM and $201.2MM in 2020 (Twitter link via NFL.com’s Tom Pelissero). This year, the cap is at $188.2MM, so that marks a significant jump in potential pay for players league-wide.
The expected increase marks a ~40% jump from five years ago in the 2015 season, when the cap was set at $143.3MM. It’s the seventh straight year in which cap is projected to climb more than $10MM per team, year over year. Since 2011, the cap has increased roughly 65 percent and $76 million per club.
The final cap number will likely set by the NFL and NFLPA in late February or early March, just before free agency gets underway. What we know is this – projected player costs, including benefits, will total more than $7.7 billion in 2020.
The NFLPA is undoubtedly happy about the jump, but the players’ union is expected to seek a larger share of the pie in the next collective bargaining agreement. The 2020 season marks the final year of the current labor contract.
For many teams, the cap increase will provide a bit of extra breathing room for the offseason. However, six clubs will still have to trim payroll between now and the new league year, as Field Yates of ESPN.com tweets. The Jaguars ($208MM), Falcons ($206MM), Bears ($205MM), Vikings ($203MM), Saints ($202MM), and Chiefs ($201MM) are all past the $200M mark for 2020, as of this writing.