The 2014 NFL salary cap has surprisingly been increased to about $130 million this offseason, up from about $123 million last year. That’s good news for the New York Giants who have a ton of holes to fill.
The Giants are coming off a disappointing 7-9 campaign, and have over two dozen pending free agents. That list includes Justin Tuck, Hakeem Nicks, Linval Joseph and Jon Beason. That doesn’t include the likely cuts my colleague Dan Schneier suggests.
From 1994-2009 the cap has increased steadily from $34 million to $123 million. The smallest increase from year-to-year was $7 million, which happened each year from 2006-2009. Since then the cap has hovered around that $123 million mark.
For successful teams like the Giants that means they’ve been cap strapped since 2010. The results have been a lot of cuts and minimum salaried signings. On the field that means poor depth, and some positions — like linebacker and offensive line — have been completely neglected.
This offseason, if you were to write up a Giants wish list it would probably include a receiver, tight end, running back, guard, center and pretty much every position but quarterback. That’s arguably the most holes the Giants have had to worry about since Tom Coughlin took over.
Prior to this news, it seemed unrealistic the Giants would be able to fill all, or even most of those. $7 million isn’t earth shattering, but it’s huge considering how little movement there has been with the cap for the last several years. For a cap strapped team like the Giants, this has to be music to their ears.