It’s never too early to look at the future and ESPN.com’s Pat Yasinskas has done just that in regard to the Saints’ 2014 salary cap scenario.
Here’s an early description: It’s not pretty.
According to Yasinskas, New Orleans sits already committed to $139 million for next season and the cap isn’t expected to budge very much from this year’s $123 million ceiling. That's the second-highest number in the NFL right now behind Dallas' $146 million.
And as he points out, the Saints’ budget for 2014 will only grow once this year’s draft picks sign.
Drew Brees is set to cost the team $17.4 million against the cap while Jahri Evans is at more than $11 million and Ben Grubbs sits at more than $9 million.
Yet, while it’s never too early for the future, it is too early to panic.
The Saints were nearly $20 million over this year’s salary cap when the offseason began. Now they’re under it.
Restructures and dismissals get the job done and there are possibilities for that we already can see.
Roman Harper is set to cost $7.9 million against the cap in ’14, but releasing him would save roughly $6.15 million. Will Smith took a pay cut this offseason and, if he’s let go in ’14, would save about $11.9 million. If Pierre Thomas is still around, releasing him would save the team $2.9 million.
But it’s much too soon to be looking at that.