Steelers Could Have 2012 Salary Cap Wiggle Room With Woodley & Timmons Contracts

When you look at the daunting salary cap issues that the Pittsburgh Steelers have facing them in 2012, there seems to be some wiggle room on at least a couple of the high priced contracts of linebackers LaMarr Woodley and Lawrence Timmons and it comes as a result of how the new contracts each signed prior to the start of the 2011 season were structured.

In 2012 Woodley has a $5.5 million roster bonus due to go along with his $3.4 million base salary and his amortized portion of his signing bonus which is $2.6 million. His 2012 cap hit is currently scheduled to be $11.5 million. The Steelers I believe have until the 10th day after the new league year starts in March to reduce the salary cap hit of a roster bonus if they guarantee it before they pay it out. Guaranteeing that roster bonus allows them to spread the cap hit of it over the remaining years on the player’s contract. In the case of Woodley they would guarantee the $5.5 million and spread it out over the remaining 5 years. That would mean a $4.4 million reduction in his 2012 cap number and make his new cap hit roughly $7.1 million.

In the case of Timmons, who has a $4.4 roster bonus due, the same guarantee can be done which would lower his 2012 cap number from $9.125 to $5.525 roughly. His 2012 base salary is scheduled to be $2.625 million and there is $2 million in addition to that which is amortized signing bonus on his new deal.

The maneuvering and guaranteeing of these roster bonuses should be able to lower the Steelers cap number by roughly $8.275 million which may allow players like James Farrior and Larry Foote to avoid being cap causalities. Once again you have to tip your hat to chief contract negotiator Omar Khan for the way he structured these new deals and already in January we are seeing the pending 2012 cap hell seem a little less hellish. There will still be some casualties, but maybe not as many as even I first anticipated.

  • SolicitingSteelers

    Dropping Battle, McFadden, and Will Allen as well as Hoke and Aaron Smith retirement should get us to only about $5 million over correct?

  • SolicitingSteelers

    ignore previous comment; didn’t see previous article on salary cap, great read thanks!

  • guest

    Timmons wasnt worth 1/2 his contract, the Steelers thought he could play well at any LB position but quickly found out he wasnt any good as a OLB. As a ILB he brings a lot of speed for his size but thats it, he has no power or is unwilling to use it. He no better than having a Safety play ILB.

  • Frederico

    I’m not sure what Timmons’s deal was. He was better toward the end of the season but went entire games without making a play.

    A few of the guys on the chopping block need to go, regardless of what they’ll play for. Farrior, for instance, is no longer a replacement level player. He shouldn’t be back even if he agreed to play for the league minimum.

  • ponhass

    why, farrior and foote are done move on. do the steelers really want to pay 7.5 million for these 2 guys. lets stop putting off cap hits by redoing contracts. also why not just cut and try to resign at a lower price to get under the cap.

  • Smittyflash24

    thank you steelersnation…damm the salary cap moves…ward,hampton,smith,mcfadden,kemo,farrior,foote,gay,batch,leftwich,dixon…make this a done deal! if hines ward will play for the minimum..fine!…but the rest of these guys hoke,battle,allen…done deal! p.s. mr. timmons the steelersnation has fond you OUT!!!!! overrated,overpaid…MR.GREAT…POTENTIAL for 5yrs..sounds like a great 1st or 2nd round pick for somebody…all his tackles are past the line…wtf!

  • guest

    That’s not a fair assessment of Timmons.
    LeBeau on…

    How the defense has played at a high level despite all of the injuries
    “I think you have to give a great deal of the credit to Lawrence Timmons. He played about four different positions for us this year, that’s hard to do. Sometimes two or three of them in the same game, and that is really hard to do. He has been the guy that we have wheeled around as we have lost some of our players. I think the other factor is that they have all been in the same system, and they play it pretty well. The whole group has assimilated to each new guy as they came in there, and I am very proud of them.”

  • Nolrog

    Steelers would be better off being brutal with the cuts and use that money to bring in some free agents. We could certainly use a free agent guard in addition to the one we’ll draft in the first or second round. Nose tackle and middle line backer too. We brought Farrior in as a FA, time to bring in the next younger Farrior the same way. We can’t always and only bring in talent thru the draft.

  • Jprankster2005

    We have Troy Smith to be the backup and draft a rookie or pick one up as a Rookie FA….. Then you go3 yrt ben, Troy smith and a rookie 3rd string that will save money, Hampton is probably to the point i’d let him go as well as farrior……. I don’t like that they want to go primary running team, The leauge has changed, Mendehall I would trade keep Redman and Dwyer and they will be the future for the next 3 yrs. or so…… Resign Wallace and draft a CB to take over for Gay…. Then get some OL help and possibly another DL guy to repleace Hampton, Worilds can start for Farrior or find another guy to do it……. They can make this work and still have a Championship team….. But they gotta stop paying plays over what there worth…… And ward needs to retire…..

  • Willard

    With the Hampton situation I would go with a 4-3 defense and use Timmons as a defensive end.