The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review is reporting early Wednesday morning that that the agents of Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger and linebacker James Harrison have both said that their clients are agreeable to restructuring their contracts before the start of the NFL\’s new year to help the team get in compliance with the salary cap. March 13th is the magic date that the Steelers need to be in compliance with the cap and it has long been speculated that both Roethlisberger and Harrison would be potential restructure candidates. Both restructured their contracts prior to the start of the 2011 season as well.
Roethlisberger has a 2012 base salary due of $11.6 million and a best guess would be that between $5-$6 million of that would be turned into a signing bonus and prorated out over the remaining years left on the contract. Roethlisberger is signed through the 2015 season so for example if his base was lowered $5.6 million in a simple restructure, it would lower his 2012 cap hit from $16.92 million down to $12.72 million, which would create a 2012 cap savings of $4.2 million.
Harrison, who is signed through the 2014 season, has a 2012 base salary due of $5.565 million and is scheduled to count $9.03 million against the 2012 cap. Should the Steelers lower his base salary down to $2 million, it would lower his 2012 cap hit to $6.65333 million, for a cap savings of around 2.37667 million. Please keep in mind these are both just educated guesses to the amounts that might be restructured.
Using the above numbers that I speculated above, it would produce a 2012 cap savings of $6.57667 million for the Steelers. Those numbers of course could change the more or less the amount of the base salary is turned into signing bonus, and although very unlikely, both players could have years added onto their contracts as well which would shake the numbers up even more.