Recently Bill Barnwell of ESPN wrote an article depicting the best team that would fit under the NFL Salary Cap of $167 Million. My question is what is the cheapest team that can be built and still be competitive in the NFL? My goal is to find cheaper players than Barnwell did; for example, Tom Brady makes $14 million dollars for the 2017 season so I have to find a quarterback for under $14 million dollars. Also, I cannot use the same players at Barnwell. As much as I would love to have David Johnson at 800K for a starting running back, that would be too easy.

Quarterback: Marcus Mariota at $6.6 Million dollars, Nick Foles at $1.6 Million and DeShone Kizer at $899,712. Total amount spent $9 Million.

Running Back: Terrance West at $1.7 Million Dollars, Matt Jones at $788K, Thomas Rawls at $620K, Peyton Barber at 540K and Elijah Hood at $480K. Total amount spent $4.1M

Wide Receiver: Terrelle Pryor at $6M, DeVante Parker at $2.9M, Brandin Cooks at $1.5M, Jarvis Landry at $1.1M, Kevin Norwood at $615K, Tyreek Hill at $586K. Total amount spent $12.7M

Tight End: Travis Kelce $5.4M, Zach Ertz $3M, Hunter Henry $1.4M. Total amount spent $8.9

Offensive linemen: Alex Boone (G) $6.7m Jack Conklin $3.6M (RT), Jake Matthews (LT) $5M, Wesley Johnson (C) $2.7, Jahri Evans $2.4M (G), Cam Robinson (LT) $1.2M, Joe Looney (G) $850K, Shaq Mason (G) $725. Total amount spent $23.1M.

Total sum of the offense: $57.6M.

Offensively this team will spread defenses out and stress the defense with speed. Cooks and Hill are some of the fastest players in the NFL, Kelce is one of the fastest Tight Ends in the league. will have to put four to five defensive backs on the field to keep up. That is where West and Jones gash the defense up the middle.

Creating a defense cheaper than Barnwell’s version was a bit tougher. Aaron Donald, Danielle Hunter, Malcolm Butler and Landon Collins are absolute steals with their contracts very team friendly at under $5M

Defensive End: Ezekiel Ansah $12.7M, Cliff Avril $5.5M, Trey Flowers 754K, Dawuane Smoot 706K. Total amount spent $19.6M

Defensive Tackle: Sylvester Williams $5M, Nick Fairley $3M, Justin Ellis $1.9M, Dalvin Tomlinson $831K. Total spent $10.3M.

Linebacker: Dont’a Hightower (OLB) $5.3M, CJ Mosley (MLB) $2.7M, Shane Ray (OLB) $2.4M, Avery Williamson (MLB) $1.8M, Ryan Anderson (OLB) $968K, Josh Carraway $486K. Total spent $13.6M

Corner: Stephon Gilmore $8.5M, Terence Newman $3.5M Vernon Hargreaves $3.2M, Bradley Roby $2.2M, Alterraun Verner $695K, Ladarius Gunter $616K. Total spent $18.7M

Safety: Harrison Smith (FS) $7.5M, Tyvon Branch (SS) $2.1M, Budda Baker (S) $1.2M, Jordan Richards (SS) $1M, Jarrod Wilson (S) $541K. Total spent 12.3M

Total sum of the defense: $74M

Defensively this team is built on flexibility and rushing the passer. Ansah and Avril provide speed off the edge, and Hightower and Mosley are fast enough to be on the field in passing situations. The secondary goes four to five deep with Smith and Branch holding steady in the backend. If need be Flowers, Smoot and Williams can provide a nice 3-4 front with Ray and Anderson rushing the passer as outside linebackers. If Baker can provide the same role as Tyrann Mathieu for this defense then the possibilities are endless for this defense.

Special Teams: Shane Lechler (P) $2M, Justin Vogel (K) $466K, Reid Ferguson (LS) $465K

Total sum of the Specialists: $2.9M


Total Cap of NFL: $167M

Total Sum of Team: $132M

Difference: $35M




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