Washington Commanders Salary Cap Update | Top Five Salaries

August 10, 2022

Salary Cap Update

With just days remaining before the Washington Commanders kick off their first preseason game of the year, the team may not be done signing players. That, of course, means the need for salary cap space will continue and may be more important right now than a few months ago as teams start to cut players over the next couple of weeks.

Right now every NFL team has at least 90 players on its roster. As cutdown days on the calendar come and go, you’ll see more names on the free agent list as teams make their way to 53. In order for Commanders Head Coach Ron Rivera to keep up with his roster, he’ll have to keep an eye on what kind of cap dollars they still have.

Will The Salary Cap Hold Washington Back?

According to Spotrac, the Commanders have $10,857,656 in salary cap space (top 51). Considering they want enough in reserve in case they get overrun by injuries, that still leaves them a three to four million dollar window to add pieces if needed.

Having the extra cap space also means they could still make a decent move if they choose to. Like going after Chicago’s Roquan Smith, who is asking the Bears to trade him as of yesterday. Acquiring a player of Smith’s caliber will obviously cost more than just the salary cap space to pay him.

Top Five Washington Commanders Salaries

While Washington doesn’t currently have any salary cap issues, they do have some ballooning deals that made the front office more frugal in their free agency push earlier this year. Let’s take a look at the top five salaries the Commanders have heading into the 2022 season.

  1. QB Carson Wentz – $28,294,119
  2. CB William Jackson III – $13,812,500
  3. WR Curtis Samuel – $12,625,000
  4. CB Kendall Fuller – $11,125,000
  5. C Chase Roullier – $9,880,000

Obviously, the one that stands out is the Carson Wentz contract, but that deal is only guaranteed through this year. Meaning, that if things go wrong, the franchise could cut ties with him this offseason without incurring any dead cap hit.

That essentially means Wentz is in a contract year for the next two seasons, since Washington has him signed through the 2024 season.

While William Jackson III and Kendall Fuller are certainly well paid, the next name on this list that jumps out is Curtis Samuel. Samuel barely saw the field in his first season with the burgundy and gold as he nursed a nagging groin injury the entire year.

Make no mistake, with the way Samuel is paid, more than just the team’s fans have and will continue to expect big things from him. The training staff has been handling his situation differently from all the other players returning from injury this year.

Rivera went into full detail about the team’s planned program to get Samuel back and ready to play Week 1.

“One of the things that we wanted to do is we wanted to make sure that we brought him back the right way. So, they’ve put a plan together. They’ve sat down, they went over it with Curtis yesterday and they’re implementing it now. And what’ll happen is you’ll see, they’ll ramp up and they’ll slow it back down. They’ll ramp up. There’ll be times when he’s interacting, getting some of the 11-on-11 work, stuff like that. But it’s all part of the plan with the ultimate goal is really the regular season more than anything else. It has nothing to do with last year’s groin injury or anything like that. This is just about the plan for him specifically.”

Lastly, Chase Roullier rounds out the top five in what may come as a surprise to some. Back in January of last year, Chase signed a four-year, $40,500,000 contract that guarantees him $19 million.

Roullier is one of the more deserving players to sign a second contract with Washington in years. He’s also been one of the most consistent players on that offensive line and a mainstay in the locker room since the team selected him in the 2017 NFL Draft.

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