With the execution of a single trade, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers used up far more salary cap space than any of their 2009 player contracts consumed.
According to PewterReport.com, the trade of defensive end Gaines Adams to the Chicago Bears eliminates $15 million in cap space. (Actually, PewterReport.com states that the amount of the cap charge will be $11 million this year and $4 million next year. Since this is the last capped year under the current Collective Bargaining Agreement, the trade or release of a player triggers the full acceleration in 2009. Thus, all $15 million hits the cap now.)
So the Bucs were permitted to charge against the 2009 cap $15 million they’d already paid or committed to pay, reducing to a large extent the impression that they’re being cheap.
More importantly, the Bucs picked up a second-round pick in a draft that many think will contain many quality players for a guy who had done nothing in two-plus years of NFL action.
The Bears, meanwhile, currently don’t have a first day pick in 2010. Their first-round pick in 2010 was sent to Denver as part of the Jay Cutler trade.