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Steelers Dead Money Salary Cap Implications Resulting From Saturday Cuts

The Pittsburgh Steelers trimmed their roster down to 53 active players Saturday afternoon and several of those players who were cut resulted in the team taking on dead money charges. Below is a recap of the dead money accumulated in both 2018 and 2019 as a result of those Saturday transactions.

Veteran quarterback Landry Jones was the most expensive player cut by the Steelers on Saturday when it comes to dead money costs. Jones was scheduled to earn a base salary in 2018 of $1.9 million and his outstanding bonus proration was $300,000, which now becomes a dead money charge in 2018. He has no dead money in 2019 associated with his release because he only had the one year remaining on his contract.

Before I move forward, let me clarify that these are only dead money charges accumulated by the Steelers as a result of the Saturday cuts, not salary cap savings. Several of the players who were cut on Saturday were already outside of the Rule of 51 so those players being waived didn’t result in any salary cap savings. On the other hand, Jones’ release cleared $1.9 million in 2018 salary cap space pending his displacement.

Safety Nat Berhe also had his contract terminated on Saturday by the Steelers and even though it’s since been reported that the team will soon re-sign him, the $90,000 signing bonus he reportedly was given back in April now becomes dead money in 2018.

Two Steelers draft picks from 2017, cornerback Brian Allen and outside linebacker Keion Adams, were also both waived on Saturday along with defensive tackle Joshua Frazier, the team’s seventh-round selection this year. Because these players had multiple years remaining on their contracts with signing bonus prorations in each of the years, and combined with their waivings happening after June 1, only their 2018 prorated bonus amounts will go on the books as dead money for this season. The remaining years of prorated bonus amounts for these players will go down as dead money for the 2019 season.

The Steelers also waived nine of their 2018 undrafted rookie free agents who had been given signing bonus on Saturday as well. These players, Greg Gilmore, Patrick MorrisQuadree HendersonKendal VickersJarvion FranklinPharoah McKeverChris SchleugerJamar Summers, and Parker Cothren, will have their prorated bonus amounts treated the same way as the draft picks above that I mentioned.

In total, the Steelers accumulated $503,352 in dead money for 2018 as a result of their Saturday cuts and another $244,850 in dead money for 2019.

Because the Steelers will likely make a few more roster moves in the coming days, in addition to filling out their practice squad, I’ll wait to paint a full 2018 team salary cap picture for you. However, you might like to know that the Steelers entered Saturday with $5,119,847 in available salary cap space after the recent contract restructure of tight end Vance McDonald was filed.

PLAYER 2018 DEAD MONEY 2019 DEAD MONEY
Landry Jones $300,000 $0
Nat Berhe $90,000 $0
Brian Allen $57,547 $115,094
Joshua Frazier $18,135 $54,405
Keion Adams $16,507 $33,014
Greg Gilmore $5,000 $10,000
Patrick Morris $3,333 $6,667
Quadree Henderson $2,666 $5,334
Kendal Vickers $2,500 $5,000
Jarvion Franklin $1,666 $3,334
Pharoah McKever $1,666 $3,334
Chris Schleuger $1,666 $3,334
Jamar Summers $1,666 $3,334
Parker Cothren $1,000 $2,000
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