Bob McPhail 6:31 a.m., May 19
Salary Cap Issue May Keep Chargers in Town
Fans lately have been grasping for reason to believe the Chargers are doing more in San Diego than biding time while a new Los Angeles stadium is built. They were given a new theory to consider this morning by Mike Florio of the ProFootballTalk website, as presented on the Scott & BR radio show on XX 1090 AM.
The theory goes like this: reports on the NFL lockout negotiations state that a new agreement will include a ‘salary floor’ that teams must dedicate to player salaries. This floor has been in effect for some time, but the difference is the new one will force teams to spend between 90 and 95 percent of the maximum team pay, or "salary cap." In 2009, the last year the sport operated with defined spending limits, the salary cap was $128 million, the floor was $112.1 million, or 87.6% of the cap.
Last year seven teams had a total payroll less than the 2009 cap. Included were the Buffalo Bills and Jacksonville Jaguars, teams in relatively small markets where relocation rumors have also been heard. If the salary floor continues to increase, as it has in every year since its inception, teams in the smallest markets with the least opportunities for revenue may soon find themselves unable to raise enough to pay their players even the league minimum.
This in turn will force team owners to operate at a loss or relocate their franchises to a bigger market. This, hopefully, means that some other owner inks a deal to land in LA before the Chargers can get the moving vans packed.
The AP reports talks concerning the lockout to be ongoing in Boston, with unnamed sources indicating a final deal was forthcoming.