Claim that Raiders don’t have cap space for Khalil Mack is off the mark

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Last week, upon signing his record-setting $25 million per year deal, Raiders quarterback Derek Carr proclaimed that he deliberately left money on the table for teammates who need new deals.

Is this good for Khalil [Mack]?” was one of the questions Carr specifically, and repeatedly, posed to G.M. Reggie McKenzie.

If it is, it won’t be yet. In the wake of guard Gabe Jackson getting a new contract, Adam Schefter of ESPN said this: “With deals done for Gabe Jackson/Derek Carr, Khalil Mack will have to wait till 2018 for new deal, per sources. Too big to fit under cap now.”

I don’t doubt that someone expressed that reasoning to Schefter (although when it comes to “sources” I’ll bet the under), but the claim is, frankly, crap.

If the Raiders wanted to get a deal done with Mack now, they could do it, cap be damned. According to the NFLPA’s official website, the Raiders currently have $32.8 million in cap space. And while it’s unclear on which specific day the information on the union website was last updated “daily,” if the Raiders had that much before doing Jackson’s deal or even before doing Carr’s deal, there’s a way to make those dollars work toward a long-term deal for all three players.

But if for some reason $32.8 million in 2017 cap room weren’t enough to sign all three players, more cap room easily could be created. A simple restructuring of the contract of guard Kelechi Osemele could instantly create more than $4 million in cap room. More than $2 million could be cleared by a simple restructuring of linebacker Bruce Irvin’s contract.

And there are other ways to create cap room in the current year, something the Raiders (who had to scramble earlier this year to comply with the spending floor) haven’t had to do in a long time.

So the issue isn’t whether they can sign Mack now. The issue is whether they want to. Apparently, they don’t.

Apparently, they prefer to squat on his rights for the next year, since he’s signed through 2018. And so, unlike Carr and Jackson, Mack isn’t entering a contract year.

He also has no real leverage. With a $2.276 million roster bonus due on the third day of training camp, a holdout becomes a lot more expensive than the $40,000 per day in fines.

So Mack can’t really do anything at this point except be upset. And upset he should be, given that: (1) he’ll have to carry the injury risk for another year until he gets paid; and (2) the Raiders apparently are making a lame excuse for not paying him now.

68 responses to “Claim that Raiders don’t have cap space for Khalil Mack is off the mark

  1. Re-structuring of contracts creates prorated dead money and to McKenzie’s credit he favors the pay-as-you-go approach (guarantees in the form of current salary) which avoids such bad cap situations

    If Mack is inked on an extension before the 2018 season (his 5th) and isn’t franchised after that season than I don’t really think that he’ll be upset.

  2. “The Raiders apparently are making a lame excuse for not paying him now”

    ————

    Mack is under contract for 2 more seasons. Then we can use the Franchise tag. Then we could use the Franchise tag again. We controll Khalil’s rights for a minimum of 4 more seasons.

  3. Florio should be miffed that he has nothing newsworthy enough to not write about how a football player should feel.

  4. The word source has lots of definitions. Might I suggest another:
    “Source.”
    7. A phantom person used in reporting to put forth a narrative that cannot be debunked, and allowing no real fact checking.

    Get on it Merriam. It’s used in political reporting all the time, just ask CNN.

  5. Quit trying to stir the pot. Maybe Mack would rather wait till next year for his payday and have the raiders add a few more key pieces once teams start cutting players to push this team over the top!

  6. Shame on those Raiders for not paying a guy with two years left on his rookie contract. Have they no decency???

  7. i thumbs down your comment says:
    Jun 30, 2017 5:37 PM
    Tom Brady is the greatest.

    Because he actually does leave $ on the table.
    ——————————————————-
    It’s annoying when people mention that without mention how his wife makes more than he does. That is surely one major factor in him taking less money.

  8. By the time it’s macks turn to strike it gold, well probably have Sean Smith, Lee smith, Crabtree, Reggie nelson, and Nate Allen’s replacements and all under rookie contracts. The key is to draft well, which Reggie Mac has done. He’s always a season or two ahead. GO RAIDERS!!!

  9. > Apparently, they prefer to squat on his rights for the next year, since he’s signed through 2018. And so, unlike Carr and Jackson, Mack isn’t entering a contract year.

    > He also has no real leverage

    Beyond those things, keep in mind that he was signed to a big contract as a top 5 overall pick:
    – $18.7MM over 4 years
    – option for the 5th year that the Raiders already exercised for $13.8MM.

    That means he’ll have made over $32MM in his first 5 years in the league.

    Contrast that to Carr and Jackson, who were entering the final year of their 2nd and 3rd round contracts. Carr’s rookie contract was $5.4MM for 4 years. Jackson’s was even less.

    As a Raider and football fan I love Mack to death. He’s a true franchise player, and while one could argue he’s been underpaid, that’s the reality of rookie contracts these days. It’s fine and fair if he doesn’t get a contract until next offseason, and Reggie will work something out that is fair to the player.

  10. Mack does carry the injury risk, but he also stands to make more in the long run by signing the contract before 2018 kicks off.

    C’mon Florio, don’t rock the boat.

    Carry on.

    RAIDER NATION

  11. Tom Brady is the greatest.

    Because he actually does leave $ on the table.
    ——————————————————–

    Pretty sure he is getting the rest UNDER the table – Maybe that Swiss account number is in his cell phone. Wait…..

  12. Please, all this nonsense has been generated from Carr’s own silly claim that he left money on the table for other players – right after signing a record-setting pay-day. Had he signed for $18M/yr I’d have seen that as valid, but not when he just became the highest paid QB in the league.

    And please quit with the nonsense, pushed by many sports-sites (including PFT) that Brady doesn’t need the money because his wife’s income dwarf’s his. Last year, Gisele’s total earnings from all sources was a whopping $30M, but Brady’s from all sources was $42M. And there’s nothing to stop Carr or any other QB marrying a wealthy actress or model.

  13. Ha, ha, ha. Why not extend a guy and pay him huge money even though he is signed for 2 more years? This is part of the whole point of the 5th year option for 1st rounders, not to force an extension after 3 years. Dumb story.

  14. i thumbs down your comment says:
    Jun 30, 2017 5:37 PM
    Tom Brady is the greatest.

    Because he actually does leave $ on the table.

    12 25
    Report comment

    ————————————————–

    Also because he’s, you know, better than everyone else

  15. no

    cap hell is there
    osmele, irvin, sean smith, marshawn lynch, etc

    you can’t overpay for free agents with peak deals
    for their age, and then pay your young qb
    25 mil per out of the woodwork and act
    like nothing happened

    very simple

    mack has leverage and thee raiders are screwed
    past 2017

  16. This bronco fan thinks Mack could easily get his best deal by waiting. If he can add a couple additional killer-years to his resume, he could become the highest paid player in the league at that point.

    Good ole capitalism. Winning!!!

  17. Because he actually does leave $ on the table.
    ——————————————————-
    It’s annoying when people mention that without mention how his wife makes more than he does. That is surely one major factor in him taking less money.

    15 7
    Report comment

    ——-

    false.

    he was doing that before he married giselle

    that is a fact

    do your homework

  18. some of these gms need iq tests before
    being handed the title of gm

    my goodness

    he paid irvin and lynch before he budgeted
    for mack

    yikes

    bb had gronk signed well before he was due

    when you have a slam dunk draft pick, get him
    extended as early as possible. don’t wait

    it is so simple

    the jets, saints, ravens, etc, etc way of teambuilding
    does not work

    of course, you could pull an elway and cheat
    the cap i suppose

    i have no doubt elway cheated in 2013 up till
    now, too

    all those free agents with bloated contracts?

  19. You’d think Mack would want to wait for the Vegas move to get the big contract instead of handing over 15% to California.

  20. STOP Reggie and Jack Del Rio are NOT THE JETS and hand out stupid contracts that hamper resigning the big guns….I look forward to my patriots and raiders this year! Plus new raider safety Obi Melifonwu is from my hometown of Grafton MA and graduated high school with my brother in 2013..

    GO PATS.

  21. The Raiders biggest problem this year IMO, will be from all the distractions and nonsense generated by the pending franchise move to Vegas.

    Look at past history of impending moves and the teams performance.

    I’s a shame because they have a very good team…

  22. nhpats says:
    Jun 30, 2017 6:37 PM

    Why do Raiders’ fans talk like they have actually won something in the past 15 years?

    ————————-

    Why are Pats fans suddenly trolling Raider pages? Recognize a threat?

  23. The Raiders got a steal when they drafted Carr in the second round. An even bigger steal was drafting Conner Cook in the fourth. The Raiders could have saved the $25 million they paid Carr. Cook is a much better QB. Sometimes teams don’t know what they have on their bench. The Raiders will be fine. They’re in a good spot.

  24. i thumbs down your comment says:
    Jun 30, 2017 5:37 PM
    Tom Brady is the greatest.

    Because he actually does leave $ on the table.
    ——————————————————-
    It’s annoying when people mention that without mention how his wife makes more than he does. That is surely one major factor in him taking less money.
    _______________________
    Brady’s wife has an individual net worth of $350M (Forbes). That is why she wears the pants and drives the car.

    Report comment

  25. It’s deals like this that got Seattle into cap hell for the next few years. Then again, Seattle did it with older blowhard players, whereas Mack is young and not a blowhard.

  26. Commenters here already beat me to the point…of this story…is what? Are you telling him he should be upset cause some extra dough is laying around and some other players got paid first? The time to sign him is now (while under contract) makes good business acumen?
    Did you ask Khalil or his agent if they are looking for a new deal? Why not make a few calls first?

  27. Here’s some fun facts!
    The raiders trail the chiefs all time head 2 head!
    Derek carr has never thrown for over 300 yds against the chiefs
    Derek carr is 1-5 head 2 head against the chiefs
    Derek carr has 6 TDS to 5 Int against the chiefs
    Derek has been sacked 18!!!! Times in 6 games against the chiefs with an all world o-line!
    When you throw the ball 50 times a game the optics can be skewed on your slight more talented Tebow
    ShUT up oakland! Dont let that alligator mouth over run that canary ass!
    GO CHIIIEEEFFFSSSSS 2016 AFC West Division Champs!

  28. STOP Reggie and Jack Del Rio are NOT THE JETS and hand out stupid contracts that hamper resigning the big guns….I look forward to my patriots and raiders this year!
    ___________________________________
    You root for two teams? LOL! Are you sure you cant squeeze the Cowboys in there?

  29. therealraider says:
    Jun 30, 2017 7:23 PM

    nhpats says:
    Jun 30, 2017 6:37 PM

    Why do Raiders’ fans talk like they have actually won something in the past 15 years?

    ————————-

    Why are Pats fans suddenly trolling Raider pages? Recognize a threat?
    _________________________

    The only thing worse than someone continually patting himself on the back with the need to remind everyone how great he is (trump), is someone continually taking credit for something they had nothing to do with (patsie fans).

  30. The only thing worse than someone continually patting himself on the back with the need to remind everyone how great he is (trump), is someone continually taking credit for something they had nothing to do with (patsie fans).

    1 1
    Report comment

    we can be in awe of our team’s success, jealous cupcake
    besides, kraft is a pats fan and former season
    ticket holder so he had something to do with it

    nighty night, tootZ

  31. I love all the Pats Trolls on Raiders posts. It validates the inevitable. Now, I’m a football fan, not just a homer Raiders fan. The odds are in the Pats favor to repeat as AFC Champs. They play in the worst division in the AFC and with no competition. Tom Brady is still great and Belichick is a HOF coach. They’ll be favored against any team at home in the AFC Championship game. However, you Homer Pats fans know the end is near. Tom has 2 years left. You think ‘Jimmy G’ is going to carry the torch? How the hell does that guy deserve a nickname after 3 games anyway?? The end is near. Don’t Troll. Have some dignity. The Darkness Is Coming.

  32. Theres a reason why Reggie is doing what he does and you are doing what you do Florio. When Reggie makes a move, report on it. Leave the deals to Reggie and company, they are doing a tremendous job. Patience Florio, Patience.

  33. Mack would be smarter earning the bigger money in Vegas rather than California, the tax bite would be zero compared to over 14%.

  34. hugeheavywoman says:
    Jun 30, 2017 7:43 PM

    Raiders will ask Vegas tax payers to pay Mack. It’s the Raiders way. Just beg, baby!
    __________________

    I have a home outside of Las Vegas. No residents are being taxed.

  35. Why why why would you sign him to an extension now? 2 years left on his contract, was a top 5 draft pick so not like he’s super underpaid like Carr and Jackson were. All NFL contracts are considered 3 year contracts no matter what the paper says. Why give him a huge signing bonus that will be on the books for the next 5 years when he could get hurt tomorrow and f the cap for no reason? Currently if he gets hurt the Raiders can cut him with dead money on the cap. Cmon people think!

  36. remember a few weeks ago when Carr had no deal yet and all these ” sources ” talked about how mad he was and how things might not get done blah blah blah.

    bottom line is you media people dont know anything and it kills you so you start making stuff up.

    why cant you guys just report what happens instead of blowing off your opinions as facts.

  37. Reggie is a God for all the Nayshun fan boys who lost their only father figure when Al croaked.

    Reggis is 30-50 as the Raiders GM. One play off appearance (no win), zero AFC West Division titles. Mckenzie would have been long ago fired by the 31 other NFL teams but he walks on water with the Raiders, why. Nobody knows.

    The Raiders finally had a winning season last year. Their first in 15 years. They also had the easiest schedule last year, needing 7 4th quarter comebacks against losing teams.. This season they have the third most difficult. Despite two bonafide stars (Carr, Mack) look for the Raiders to struggle this year, particularly with Del Rio who does not know his X’s and O’s. 7-9. No defense.

  38. According to overthecap.com the raiders have 18 mill after Carrs deal. That ism not counting Jacksons deal and our top 3 draft picks are still un singed. So yea I am ok with waiting a year on re upping Mack. Reggie knows always leave some cap room because you never know who will get cut. I am all for Resigning Mack no harm in waiting a year.

  39. Thank God your not the GM for any team. Die Mack retain your services or something. McKenzie has a plan and it seems to be working, so why would they follow the aformentioned nonsense? Maybe Davis doesn’t have the liquid funds for the upfront money needed. Let’s face it, he’s not a billionair……yet.

  40. “araidersfan says:
    Jun 30, 2017 5:23 PM
    Re-structuring of contracts creates prorated dead money and to McKenzie’s credit he favors the pay-as-you-go approach (guarantees in the form of current salary) which avoids such bad cap situations.”

    ——————————————

    There is little difference in prorating bonus money over multiple years and signing someone to the same amount of money in guaranteed money over the same span. They are just two different ways of accomplishing the same thing. The cap hits for the guaranteed money over the length of the contract will ultimately be the same.

  41. “yak2104 says:
    Jun 30, 2017 8:36 PM
    I love all the Pats Trolls on Raiders posts. It validates the inevitable. Now, I’m a football fan, not just a homer Raiders fan. The odds are in the Pats favor to repeat as AFC Champs. They play in the worst division in the AFC and with no competition. Tom Brady is still great and Belichick is a HOF coach. They’ll be favored against any team at home in the AFC Championship game. However, you Homer Pats fans know the end is near. Tom has 2 years left. You think ‘Jimmy G’ is going to carry the torch? How the hell does that guy deserve a nickname after 3 games anyway?? The end is near. Don’t Troll. Have some dignity. The Darkness Is Coming.”

    ———————————————

    Raiders ain’t winning jack until they build a defense consisting of more than one player and, by the time they do that, other teams (Titans?) might catch them.

    As for your “homers” comment…Man, your team will be gone in two years. Sounds like you have fanbase issues of your own.

    24 straight years of sellouts in Foxboro btw.

  42. At the first Raider home game all fans will be handed a map with directions how to get to Vegas.

  43. therealraider says:
    Jun 30, 2017 7:23 PM
    nhpats says:
    Jun 30, 2017 6:37 PM

    Why do Raiders’ fans talk like they have actually won something in the past 15 years?

    ————————-

    Why are Pats fans suddenly trolling Raider pages? Recognize a threat?

    ——–

    Absolutely. The Broncos are a threat. The Seahawks are a threat. The Raiders…..not so much.

  44. Calm down Raider Nation. I know it’s been a long time. They look like they’re building in the right direction, although I don’t see that they did much to fix a poor defense. DCarr, in his 3 yr career, has never even played a postseason game, much less won one.

  45. hahaicansezbelicheat says:
    Jul 1, 2017 7:00 AM

    “araidersfan says:
    Jun 30, 2017 5:23 PM
    Re-structuring of contracts creates prorated dead money and to McKenzie’s credit he favors the pay-as-you-go approach (guarantees in the form of current salary) which avoids such bad cap situations.”

    ——

    There is little difference in prorating bonus money over multiple years and signing someone to the same amount of money in guaranteed money over the same span. They are just two different ways of accomplishing the same thing. The cap hits for the guaranteed money over the length of the contract will ultimately be the same.

    ====================

    That’s true if a player isn’t cut or retires. There is an acceleration of the remaining (unpaid) part of the amortized bonus payments if a player is released or retires which results in dead money against the cap. On the other hand, if the guaranteed amounts were paid out as salary rather than bonus, then none of it will count against the cap for the year of release/retirement.

    With Carr’s and Mack’s (coming) huge contracts, part of the guarantees will have to be bonuses. But for other non-cornerstone players, the pay-as-you-go approach for guarantees allows flexibility to cut such players if their productivity drops with no real cap consequences in the year of release.

  46. hahaicansezbelicheat says:
    Jul 1, 2017 7:08 AM
    “yak2104 says:
    Jun 30, 2017 8:36 PM
    I love all the Pats Trolls on Raiders posts. It validates the inevitable. Now, I’m a football fan, not just a homer Raiders fan. The odds are in the Pats favor to repeat as AFC Champs. They play in the worst division in the AFC and with no competition. Tom Brady is still great and Belichick is a HOF coach. They’ll be favored against any team at home in the AFC Championship game. However, you Homer Pats fans know the end is near. Tom has 2 years left. You think ‘Jimmy G’ is going to carry the torch? How the hell does that guy deserve a nickname after 3 games anyway?? The end is near. Don’t Troll. Have some dignity. The Darkness Is Coming.”

    ———————————————

    Raiders ain’t winning jack until they build a defense consisting of more than one player and, by the time they do that, other teams (Titans?) might catch them.

    As for your “homers” comment…Man, your team will be gone in two years. Sounds like you have fanbase issues of your own.

    24 straight years of sellouts in Foxboro btw.”

    Thats what happens when the nfl takes a crap organization and makes them into something. Without the NFL Brady isn’t even a D1 qb. Also, you band wagon fans hold the nfl record for consecutive blackouts at 17 games. Thats over 2 seasons of football without selling out 1 game. You’re a loser. Your team sucks. New England during the revolutionary was the equivalent of France in WW2, you got the floor mopped with you then act like you won.

  47. And, maybe, just MAYBE, they don’t want to create a precedent of renegotiating rookie contracts with 2 years still left on them! As others pointed out, Mack has made plenty of money and in the next 2 years will be the highest paid defensive player in the league (depending on when Donald signs his deal as he deserves that distinction too).

  48. therealraider says:
    Jun 30, 2017 5:29 PM
    “The Raiders apparently are making a lame excuse for not paying him now”

    ————

    Mack is under contract for 2 more seasons. Then we can use the Franchise tag. Then we could use the Franchise tag again. We controll Khalil’s rights for a minimum of 4 more seasons.

    ——————-
    What you suggest would build up so that he gets too expensive and become the cap problem rather than avoiding one. But the raiders arent going to do that so no worries.

    As far as “Raiders making lame excuses” no they are not. They are simply doing smart business not doing it yet and no excuses lame or otherwise are needed.

    The contract with Carr did plan for the day Mack needs his payday so it should be obvious to all when that’s coming.

    If you want to question the way the Raiders are doing this then look first to the Patriots as an example of the same methods. Some would argue they have attained success with that approach so you cant blame the Raiders for adopting the same.

  49. Not many people understand how the RM structures contracts. The only bad contract on the team right now is Austin Howard. He’ll leave some dead money.

    Most of all Raider contracts have a built in out, pay a little more up front and can print cap money very easily.

    Even Carr’s contact has an out. After the 3rd year the Raiders be rid of Carr if he fails (most likely he isn’t going to fail) or can make a blockbuster trade that would only cost them 7 mill against the cap for a bounty of picks.

    Or they can win 3 superbowls, Carr goes to the HoF with multiple league and superbowl MVP’s.

    This RM guy has it going on, he isn’t the NFL executive of the year because he’s clueless.

  50. Well we still have other moves to make especially on D.Why try to pinch and pay Mack now when when we have already exercised the 5 year option.

    Mack is under a first round top 5 multimillion dollar contract vs a 2nd and a 3rd rnd contract, franchise and franchise protecting positions.

    I think Mack can understand why we wanted to pay them first.Money wise it is better for Mack because that is one year closer to Vegas that his money gets.

    We will make him the highest paid defensive player for sure after 4 years when we actually have him under contract for 5.So what the problem is?

    And isn’t the problem really with Schefty for making a statement that you assumed he had
    sources to make?

  51. hugeheavywoman says:
    Jun 30, 2017 7:49 PM
    i thumbs down your comment says:
    Jun 30, 2017 5:37 PM
    Tom Brady is the greatest.

    Because he actually does leave $ on the table.
    ——————————————————-
    It’s annoying when people mention that without mention how his wife makes more than he does. That is surely one major factor in him taking less money.
    _______________________
    Brady’s wife has an individual net worth of $350M (Forbes). That is why she wears the pants and drives the car.

    —————————

    Whatever, he still leaves money on the table.

  52. Raiders are being smart here. Mack is undeniably one of the very best players in the NFL. He will be taken well care of. But you never renew a guys contract with two years remaining. It sets a dangerous precedent and the next guy will want his renewed with three years remaining. Raiders are doing the right thing here by holding their ground. Besides, Mack knows he will end up being the highest paid defensive player in the league.

  53. Only the NFL player’s association would approve a collective bargaining agreement where late round draft picks can make a killing earlier than first round picks, while at the same time
    lowering the scale of what first round picks used to get paid.

    The reason the Raiders aren’t giving Mack a deal is because it would be a dumb move financially to do so. If they tore up the last two years of his deal and suddenly paid him way more than they need to, the media would rip the Raiders for doing that. Sad to say, Khalil, may need to hold out in 2018.

  54. Here’s some fun facts!
    The raiders trail the chiefs all time head 2 head!
    Derek carr has never thrown for over 300 yds against the chiefs
    Derek carr is 1-5 head 2 head against the chiefs
    Derek carr has 6 TDS to 5 Int against the chiefs
    Derek has been sacked 18!!!! Times in 6 games against the chiefs with an all world o-line!
    When you throw the ball 50 times a game the optics can be skewed on your slight more talented Tebow
    ShUT up oakland! Dont let that alligator mouth over run that canary ass!
    GO CHIIIEEEFFFSSSSS 2016 AFC West Division Champs!

    —————-

    Here something even funnier

    The Chiefs are the only team in the AFC West to NEVER win a trophy named after their founder…

    Let that sink in for a sec-

  55. Hey osweiler..are the raiders a threat…..nope.All this talk about the raiders being a threat is funny.You think that they could have at the very least beaten an osweiler led team.

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