Raiders meet salary cap prior to cuts

On Wednesday it was revealed that the Raiders had restructured the contracts of defensive tackle Richard Seymour and safety Michael Huff. These moves put knocked $12 million off of the projected $22 million they would be over the cap. But come Thursday it was revealed the Carson Palmer had also restructured his deal. And between the three of them, the Raiders are right at the salary cap.

The Raider hovered around $10 million over the salary cap after the Seymour and Huff extensions/restructures. Now Scout.com is reporting the savings for 2012 from Palmer's restructure is at $9.34 million. Bringing the Raiders right up to the projected salary cap.

I say projected because we don't know yet exactly what the figure will be. The thinking is that it will be about $120 million. But if it turns out to be slightly higher, the Raiders are already compliant.

The details of the Palmer deal are as such: He goes from a $12.5 million base salary this season down to the veteran minimum of $825,000 with the remaining $11.675 million converted to a roster bonus. To prorate the money, the team added two voidable years to the end of his contract, extending it to 2016.

This is almost the exact same thing the Raiders did with Seymour and Huff to shave around $6 million off the 2012 cap from each of them.

Next up for a restructure could be linebacker Aaron Curry which would definitely put the team well into the black (so the speak).

The beauty of all this is the Raiders have yet to make a single cut from the roster.

If the team cuts ties with Kamerion Wimbley, which they look like they will, that is another $4.5 million saved this season. Then if the scenario that I proposed of cutting John Henderson, Chris Johnson, and Hiram Eugene were to play out, the team would save another $10 million.

Being $14 million under the cap would be a shocker right about now wouldn't it?

Granted, of course, that we still have the Tyvon Branch franchise tag to think about. If he signs it, his $6.2 million salary goes against the cap. But the team is trying hard to re-sign him long term and if/when they are able to do it, his 2012 cap hit will be very small-estimated at under $3 million.

Plenty more cuts and restructures to come. And things are looking up.

Follow me on Twitter @LeviDamien or befriend me on facebook.

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