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Roethlisberger will restructure contract to create cap room

Ben Roethlisberger

Teams aren’t required to get under the 2011 salary cap until the 2011 League Year officially begins.  And the 2011 League Year is expected to officially begin on Thursday.

For teams like the Steelers, who reportedly are currently $10 million over the $120 million spending limit (actually, they’re only $7 million over the limit because every team has the discretionary ability to exceed the 2011 cap by $3 million), it means that they’ll have to create cap space, quickly.  To help the effort in Pittsburgh, quarterback Ben Roethlisberger has agreed to restructure his contract, according to the Associated Press.

Signed in 2008, Roethlisberger is operating under an eight-year, $102 million deal.  But before we all applaud Big Ben for “taking less” Peyton-style, the man who gets paid like Manning isn’t absorbing a pay cut.

Instead, it’s a so-called “simple restructuring,” in which salary to be earned in the future is converted to a signing bonus, which is then spread over the remaining years of the deal.  For example, converting $5 million in salary to a signing bonus would spread the $5 million over the final five years of the contract — and free up $4 million in 2011 cap room.

In recent years, this device has been used far less frequently.  In 2010, with no salary cap, it wasn’t needed at all.  In the several years prior to that, with the 2006 CBA giving more money than ever to the players, teams didn’t need to resort to such devices to create current cap room, since plenty of teams were well below the spending limit.

The device merely defers until tomorrow cap charges that could be taken today.  And so, eventually, some teams will find themselves in what used to be known loosely as cap purgatory, requiring drastic reductions that can’t simply be made by asking the franchise quarterback if he’d be willing to take a lot of his money right now, instead of later.

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40 Responses to “Roethlisberger will restructure contract to create cap room”
  1. thatdamnsasquatch says: Aug 1, 2011 5:52 PM

    And all Steelers fans should send thank you cards to Harrison…

  2. packersareandwillalwaysbebetterthanthebears says: Aug 1, 2011 5:54 PM

    Bad quarterback, good move.

  3. offsideburns says: Aug 1, 2011 5:58 PM

    Great move Ben

  4. berniemadoffsides says: Aug 1, 2011 6:02 PM

    Yeah, he’s terrible. He’s not even 30 and has 3 SB appearances. Big Ben’s a stud, you maniac…

  5. crohrbaugh says: Aug 1, 2011 6:02 PM

    Did they have to force him?

  6. xstaticonradio says: Aug 1, 2011 6:03 PM

    At least he won’t take 23 million dollars a year and act like he’s doing his team a huge favor. Well no one would be silly enough to do that, right?

  7. mr4thand1 says: Aug 1, 2011 6:04 PM

    It’s all about WINNING in the ‘Burgh……Right on, Ben!

    “Here we go STEELERS, HERE WE GO!!!!!!”

  8. chargerdillon says: Aug 1, 2011 6:04 PM

    After everybody came to the conclusion how overpaid he was based on his ability to hand off the ball for a franchise that has always been of the run-first mentality paired with the reality that in 3 Superbowl appreances, in at least 2 intances had the Steelers Defense, Steelers Special Teams, or anybody not named Ben Rothlisburger been in control of the football, chances are the Steelers would have 3 rings right now instead of 2.

    Superbowl 1: Giftwrapped for a player who helped the other team more than his own

    Superbowl 2: Deserves credit for big plays

    Superbowl 3: Showed that a good quaterback will beat an average quaterback with a great defense

  9. touchdownroddywhite says: Aug 1, 2011 6:05 PM

    They paid him to the tune of 102 million over 8 years?

    I’m kind of shocked, but he does in fact have more SB winning drives than Manning.

  10. bonniebengal says: Aug 1, 2011 6:08 PM

    Meanwhile Mike Brown has close to $50 million in cap room and no requirement to spend it. Do something NFL!

  11. foobarfoofoo says: Aug 1, 2011 6:09 PM

    And how can they get to 99 percent cash spending in future years if they spend more than 100% this year? I don’t get how that works.

    if they spend 5 Mio now on Roethlisberger, but 1 Mio counts against this years cap and 4 Mio against future years, they have 4 Mio counting against the cap without it being cash spending. Is that how the system is meant to work?

  12. thetooloftools says: Aug 1, 2011 6:11 PM

    I’m coming around to not hating him as much.

  13. rando74 says: Aug 1, 2011 6:12 PM

    If Ben needed an advance why restructure and turn into into a sigining bonus? He should have jsut called JG Wentworth. “Its your money, use it when YOU need it”.

  14. peterfeldersnatch says: Aug 1, 2011 6:18 PM

    if manning played on that team, and that defence, they probably would have won about 7 superbowl in a row, and counting

  15. peterfeldersnatch says: Aug 1, 2011 6:21 PM

    oh, and thats ricky mannning jr im refering to.

  16. bleedblue18 says: Aug 1, 2011 6:29 PM

    Harrison says stop throwing the ball to the other team on are side of the 50 yd line Ben.

  17. m1k3g says: Aug 1, 2011 6:31 PM

    chargerdillon says:
    Aug 1, 2011 6:04 PM
    After everybody came to the conclusion how overpaid he was based on his ability to hand off the ball for a franchise that has always been of the run-first mentality paired with the reality that in 3 Superbowl appreances, in at least 2 intances had the Steelers Defense, Steelers Special Teams, or anybody not named Ben Rothlisburger been in control of the football, chances are the Steelers would have 3 rings right now instead of 2.

    Superbowl 1: Giftwrapped for a player who helped the other team more than his own

    Superbowl 2: Deserves credit for big plays

    Superbowl 3: Showed that a good quaterback will beat an average quaterback with a great defense
    ————————————————————————————

    Oh, the irony of this comment coming from a Philip Rivers fan….

  18. danrooneyii says: Aug 1, 2011 6:43 PM

    If Manning played on the Steelers, they would have no superbowls. The Steelers defense wouldn’t exist when he makes 20 million a year and lobbies to draft offensive bums like Donald Brown and Anthony Gonzalez in the first round.

  19. CKL says: Aug 1, 2011 6:47 PM

    The Steelers manage their cap/payroll well and they don’t have to restructure guys often IIRC. It’s surprising they felt they had to do this.

  20. youalldrinkhaterade says: Aug 1, 2011 6:48 PM

    And the Eagles are still close to 20 million under the cap…howwww???

  21. theytukrjobs says: Aug 1, 2011 6:50 PM

    If the money is guaranteed, then no it isn’t really a pay cut. But if the Steelers have the option of cutting him later if he gets hurt or something, and don’t actually pay, then it could potentially be a pay cut.

    Also you can argue that allowing someone 5 years interest free to pay a debt is sorta like doing them a favor.

  22. dogsweat1 says: Aug 1, 2011 6:51 PM

    Best QB in Steeler history!!

  23. alldayvikings says: Aug 1, 2011 6:53 PM

    What kind of picture is that?

  24. fancyleague says: Aug 1, 2011 7:00 PM

    Not to mention that Peyton Manning without an offensive line would resemble a dorky-looking bug splat.

  25. blchaney69 says: Aug 1, 2011 7:03 PM

    It is rather funny…If this was manning, Any willingness to Restructure would be Applauded as a Heroic Move.. But it’s Ben, so we feel the need to explain how he isnt taking a paycut.. Has manning EVER taken a Paycut!! NO, I beleive the last time Manning ALSO restructured and made the same money but just moved numbers around to help the cap effort.. Why would ANY player take a Pay cut for this purpose!! Its the GM’s job to build a winning team and fit it under the cap.. Ben SHOULD BE applauded for being willing to work with the team to make it happen!! GET A GRIP HATERS..
    STEELERS DO IT THE RIGHT WAY!!!

  26. steelernation1 says: Aug 1, 2011 7:10 PM

    and you have to wonder about some of these other temas liek the Pats and Eagles?stock piling players?how the hell do they have room under the cap…soemthin fishy goin on there

  27. gimmeabruschi says: Aug 1, 2011 7:17 PM

    I used to loathe this guy.

    But after his misdeeds I think he really has seen the light and is trying to remake himself. I hope that is for real.

    He was contrite about his mistakes, he’s gotten married and is giving his team a break financially. He is doing good things.

    I’m wishing him well.

  28. WingT says: Aug 1, 2011 7:25 PM

    If my employer asked me if I would like to have a lump sum advanced pay for my future years of service then I would jump all over that. And then I would give it an “aw shucks” shrug and stick it in the bank and earn me some interest. Hell I bet the interest earned alone would pay my college bar tab for the year / sarcasm

  29. rectumnearlykilledem says: Aug 1, 2011 7:37 PM

    He was raping them with that contract anyway.

  30. blchaney69 says: Aug 1, 2011 7:37 PM

    I DO BELIEVE YOU ARE CONFUSED ABOUT HOW IT WORKS!!

  31. emmac13 says: Aug 1, 2011 7:37 PM

    He wants to be so much like P. Manning. Except for taking no for an answer.

  32. udontknowjaq says: Aug 1, 2011 8:22 PM

    steelernation1 says:
    Aug 1, 2011 7:10 PM
    and you have to wonder about some of these other temas liek the Pats and Eagles?stock piling players?how the hell do they have room under the cap…soemthin fishy goin on there

    ………………………………..

    Those teams didn’t have SB winning talent B4 they stocked piled. Pats don’t have many players on that team that last won a SB and the Eagles well you kno! The Steelers paid a lot of there own Starters as well as backups to keep there SB winning teams together over the last 7 years… is why the Steelers is a mature team a lot of 30 and over players

  33. themitchdraft says: Aug 1, 2011 9:04 PM

    A real teammate wouldn’t need to advertise it.

  34. kmurph1226 says: Aug 1, 2011 9:05 PM

    Cap room made me think of bathroom, and that reminds me of….

    that horrible picture he probably took in there.

  35. drgfri says: Aug 1, 2011 9:16 PM

    Yet he needed a bodyguard to block the door to protect his room in that Georgia bathroom. What a tool! Classy, classy Steelers….

  36. blchaney69 says: Aug 1, 2011 9:21 PM

    PRETTY SURE HE TOOK THAT THE WEEK OF THE SUPERBOWL…. YOUR TEAM PROBABLY DOESNT KNOW MUCH ABOUT THAT!!

  37. Deb says: Aug 1, 2011 9:41 PM

    @bonniebengal …

    $50 million under cap?? Wow. I don’t think the league can do anything, but Carson can show up when the season’s about to start and grab a chunk of it. Hope he does, too.

  38. tiffpats4eva says: Aug 1, 2011 10:10 PM

    Finally.

    Brady has been doing this for years.

  39. laxer37 says: Aug 1, 2011 10:30 PM

    @bonniebengal

    Teams have until the end of the season to use all of their cap money. From what I understand Mike Brown plans to use every minute to figure out who is worthy of his precious scratch.

    Since he seems disinterested in signing any big free agents, look for several veteran players to get nice contract extensions whether they earn them or not.

  40. mario8728 says: Aug 1, 2011 10:33 PM

    all the teams do, in fact, have to spend all available money this year. But, they have til the end of the year to do so. So the bengals,for example, can wait til after the season to spend that 50 mil in cap space…6Burgh Fo’ Life!

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