I posted a while ago about how the Steelers could possibly have some salary cap wiggle room with linebackers LaMarr Woodley and Lawrence Timmons because of the way that their new contracts were structured. It seems like the Steelers did not wait though to just work with the roster bonuses as Brian McIntyre reports that the Steelers have restructured the contract of Woodley to lower his 2012 salary cap charge from $11.5 million to $4.94 million. Reportedly they lowered the base paragraph 5 number of Woodley from $3.4 million down to $700,000 and paid the difference of $2.7 million along with the 5 million roster as a signing bonus that will be amortized out over the remaining five years of the contract. For the record, my numbers say the roster bonus was $5.5 million, but we will not split hairs until I can look at the real numbers myself. The move trims off $6.56 million just like McIntyre suggest it does. This saves the Steelers even more than the $4.4 million I suggested by just guaranteeing the roster bonus and amortizing it out like a signing bonus.
Now with Woodley done, you have to think that Timmons will not be far behind. He has a $2.625 million base salary in 2012 and a $4.5 million roster bonus due in early March. His current cap hit is scheduled to be $9.125 million. I suspect you will see that $4.5 million combined with a good portion of his base salary and turned into signing bonus as well. That should save more than the $3.6 million that I calculated. That would mean that with a stroke of the pen basically, Omar Khan will have carved off likely around $10-$12 million off of the 2012 salary cap.