I meant it when I said I wasn’t worried about the Bears’ salary cap situation. Because, yeah, I realize that clearing $25 million in cap space wouldn’t necessarily be easy. HOWEVER, I understood that there were paths to make it happen.
And now, ESPN’s Adam Schefter brings clarity to life:
Bears will be saving just over $23 million of salary-cap space this week by converting the 2021 base salaries of LB Khalil Mack, S Eddie Jackson and OL Cody Whitehair into signing bonuses, per sources. The moves will give the Bears more firepower heading into free-agent week.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 13, 2021
Schefter reports the Bears are saving more than $23 million in cap space by restructuring deals for Khalil Mack, Eddie Jackson, and Cody Whitehair. Digging around at OverTheCap.com, Mack’s base salary for 2021 was $17.046 million, Jackson’s was $8.95 million Mack, and Whitehair’s checked in at $6.5 million. Those are some pretty hefty base deals. Using Spotrac’s Roster Management tool, re-structuring those contracts creates an estimated $22,080,750 in cap space. But no matter how one slices it, this is a significant chunk of change.
The maneuver in which their respective base salaries become signing bonuses has been a go-to for GM Ryan Pace in recent years. But it gives Chicago some wiggle room to do business at the start of the league year. More importantly, as Schefter tweets, it gives the Bears “more firepower” as they enter what figures to be a busy week of moving, shaking, and transactions. And as far as I’m concerned, the Bears could use as much firepower as they can get as they ramp up their pursuit of a quarterback upgrade. Perhaps someone whose name rhymes with hustle chill-son.