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NFL salary cap could climb as high as $155 million

The NFL and NFLPA will announce the 2016 salary cap leading up to the March 9 start of free agency, but all indications are that it will be a sizable bump from last year. Previous reports suggested a cap of $153 million, but NFL Network reporter Rand Getlin is reporting he is hearing the number could go as high as $155 million.

The reason the number is moving around is the league and the players association have to finalize the various revenue figures that are shared between all the teams. A long-term deal was signed, but there are always adjustments to make as the contract progresses. The two sides hammer it out and eventually come up with the cap figure. This impacts more than just the start of free agency. It impacts the specific tender figures for franchise and transition tags, as well as restricted free agents. That in turn impacts former first round picks and the associated fifth year rookie option.

As the number looks to go higher, do not expect many extensions to get done before free agency starts. There is a lot of money out there, with potentially five teams holding $50 million or more in cap space. I don't expect things to get super crazy by any means, but with that much money out there and some minimum spending requirements to be met, I imagine the first couple days of free agency will be particularly interesting.

A year ago, the 49ers signed Torrey Smith to a 5-year, $40 million contract. There were plenty of bigger deals, but it was one of the bigger outside free agent additions for the 49ers. Will we see the team "break the bank" on anybody this offseason, or will it be some more modest additions?