clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Aldon Smith's suspension, NaVorro Bowman's injury, and the San Francisco 49ers salary cap

New, comments

The San Francisco 49ers finally have clarity on Aldon Smith's suspension. We break down how this and other issues impact the salary cap.

Brian Bahr

The San Francisco 49ers received word that Aldon Smith would be suspended for the first 9 games of the 2014 season. This comes as they prepare for final roster cuts, due by 1 p.m. PT on Saturday. This also follows their first round of roster moves that included placing NaVorro Bowman on the Reserve/PUP list.

These various transactions will have an impact on the team's salary cap. While we'd prefer the 49ers have Smith and Bowman playing all season, the team will at least experience a little bit of cap relief during their respective absences.

NaVorro Bowman's contract calls for $750,000 in game-day roster bonuses. They are tied to him being active, with a pament of $46,875 each game he is active. Bowman will miss at least six games on the PUP list, which gives the 49ers an extra $281,250 in cap space. It is unlikely Bowman is activated immediately after the six games, so that number is likely to increase.

When the 49ers make their final roster cuts, they will place Aldon Smith on the Reserve/Suspended list. While Smith is on the list, he will not receive his base salary from the 49ers. A player's base salary is paid out over the 17 weeks of the season. Smith is due $2,336,454 for the 2014 season, which divides out to $137,438 per week. He has a 9-game suspension, which means the 49ers clear $1,236,942 in cap space. Their bye is situated during the suspension. This was announced as a 9-game suspension, as opposed to a 10-week suspension, so it would seem to me that he would get paid for the bye week. I'm not entirely sure on this though.

There are numerous other players of note that could impact the 49ers cap space. Right guard Alex Boone continues his holdout, and will not be paid as long as he continues. He is due a $2 million base salary, and $200,000 in game-day roster bonus money. The 49ers will clear $125,000 for each game he sits out from his base salary, and $12,500 from his roster bonus. He will also continue to owe back portions of his 2011 signing bonus. The team can recover up to the 2014 prorated portion of his signing bonus. Training camp allowed for recovery of $85,000 of that money. The remaining is then divided out over the course of the season, eventually totaling $340,000 (the prorated portion of his $1.7 million signing bonus).

Several other players have roster bonuses tied to being active on game day. Here is a full rundown of that group:

Frank Gore has a $2.75 million roster bonus. $750,000 of it is for being active for 13 games, while the $2 million is tied to the game-day active roster. For each game he misses, the 49ers would gain $125,000 (of that $2 million) in salary cap room.

Michael Crabtree has a $250,000 roster bonus. For each game he misses, the 49ers would gain $15,625 in salary cap room.

Anquan Boldin has a $500,000 roster bonus. For each game he misses, the 49ers would gain $31,250 in salary cap room.

Vernon Davis has a $400,000 roster bonus. For each game he misses, the 49ers would gain $25,000 in salary cap room.

Adam Snyder has a $50,000 roster bonus. For each game he misses, the 49ers gain $3,125 in salary cap room.

Mike Iupati has a $327,663 roster bonus, with $46,313 of it guaranteed if he makes the Week 1 roster. The rest is broken into 15 checks worth $18,750 per game.

Joe Staley has a $500,000 roster bonus. For each game he misses, the 49ers gain $31,250 in salary cap room.

Anthony Davis has a $2.32 million roster bonus, with $1.32 million being paid back in March. He then has $1 million in game-day active bonus money. For every game he misses, the 49ers gain $62,500 in salary cap room.

Justin Smith has a $1.6 million roster bonus. For each game he misses, the 49ers gain $100,000 in salary cap room.

Ahmad Brooks has a $750,000 roster bonus. For each game he misses, the 49ers gain $46,875 in salary cap room.

Dan Skuta has a $150,000 roster bonus. For each game he misses, the 49ers gain $9,375 in salary cap room.

Patrick Willis has a $656,250 roster bonus. For each game he misses, the 49ers gain $41,016 in salary cap room.

Tramaine Brock has a $320,000 roster  bonus. For each game he misses, the 49ers gain $20,000 in salary cap room.

Antoine Bethea has a $400,000 roster bonus. For each game he misses, the 49ers gain $25,000 in salary cap room.

Craig Dahl has a $175,000 roster bonus. For each game he misses, the 49ers gain $10,938 in salary cap room.

This is just an example of what the 49ers are known for doing. Putting roster bonuses in contracts, so that the player must be active to earn all the money. We will see this in more detail next season when Colin Kaepernick's contract really starts to kick in.

As always you can follow me on twitter @Jay_AB81, or check out Niner Cap Hell.