At What Cost? How signings of C Chris Myers and WR Robert Meachem

Earlier this week UKRedskin and Ronnie profiled center Chris Myers and wide receiver Robert Meachem as possible free agent targets for the Redskins. Now is the time to look at what they might cost, and what it will mean for the Redskins overall cap number. Now the Redskins with more than $40 million to spend against the cap this season (for a detailed report on their cap situation go here) the Redskins can afford these players, but the price still has to be right for it to make sense for Washington.

Center Chris Myers:

Chance he re-signs: 40%

The Texans are definitely going to want Myers, who is one of the premier centers in the league back, but the question will be is are they willing to pay. Houston has quite a few big named players with their contracts coming up in the next two years, and they might not be able to afford Myers as well.

Chance he is franchised: 0%

Offensive linemen still all get the same franchise tag meaning, he'd be guaranteed over $10 million next year, which would be well over the top for a center. Last year the Panthers franchised C Ryan Kalil and it led to him getting the largest AAV (annual average value) of any center by more than a million dollars. I can't imagine the Texans want to go down that road.

What will he cost?

Myers is coming off another fantastic season allowing just 1 sack and 10 pressures all season (both very good for a center), and pass blocking isn't considered his strong suit. Myers is a perfect technician at the center position and gets quite a bit of credit for opening up holes for the Texans elite running game. Now normally production like what Myers brings would skyrocket his price tag, but two things will work somewhat against him. First is his age, as Myers will turn 31 early in the season next year. The second concern is Myers' size, or lack there of. He's considered undersized by most teams, and is considered a 'system' player. The good news for the Redskins is neither one of those are a real concern for them. The system that Myers gets typecasted in just so happens to be the Mike Shanahan offense, and the age isn't a real concern as a smart veteran presence who knows the offense would be key to helping a new QB and any offensive linemen to learn the system. Also Myers has missed exactly 1 snap over the last four seasons before week 17 this year, where he was only pulled to rest up for the playoffs. Those concerns though will limit the number of his suitors, which should keep his cost down. I think he will get well below the Kalil/Nick Mangold threshold, and I think a good fair deal for him would be 5 years $27.5 million, with about $15 million of that guaranteed.

How does this affect the cap?

The $15 million guarantee is a bit on the high side, but probably what you'd have to do to land him. I'm thinking it would include a $9 million signing bonus, and six million from his first 3 year salaries guaranteed.

Year by Year breakdown: Sal=salary for that year, SB=signing bonus allotment, OB= any other bonuses, Cap hit=what he costs vs the cap, REL=what it would cost to cut a player in a given year

2012: Sal: $1.2 mil; SB: $1.8 mil; OB:$0; Cap hit: $3 million, REL: $15 million

2013: Sal: $2.2 mil; SB: $1.8 mil; OB: $0: Cap hit: $4 million; REL: $12 million

2014: Sal: $3.6 mil; SB: $1.8 mil; OB: $0; Cap hit: $5.4 million; REL: $8 million

2015: Sal: $5 mil, SB: $1.8 mil; OB: $0, Cap hit: $6.8 million, REL: $3.6 million

2016: Sal: $6.5 mil, SB: $1.8 mil; OB $0, Cap Hit: $8.3 million, REL: $1.8 million

Wide Receiver Robert Meachem:

Chance that he resigns: 20%

It's not likely, but if Marques Colston bolts in free agency the Saints might look to lock up the cheaper Meachem. Given all their big name free agents, I wouldn't be on it, but the Saints could be leery about losing two of their top receivers this year.

Chance that he is franchised: 0%

There is no set of circumstances where Meachem would be franchised.

What he will cost?

Now this is a really tough one because we aren't looking at the top edges of the market, or do we have a good comparison player for Meachem. The 2nd and 3rd tier receiver market has a wide range of salary averages between $3.5 million and $8 million plus. Now such a glut of receivers will ensure that Meachem doesn't get overvalued as a top tier receiver, but it won't push him down too far.

The other issue with Meachem is figuring out what school of thought will win out. Meachum supporters will say he should get paid quite a bit given his age, size, speed, and production relative to opportunity. They will argue that if he was on another team that didn't spread the ball around so much, he'd be a number 1 or 2, and have well over a 1,000 yards a season. On the flip side the opposite will be argued, that he is a product of a wide open offense with a record setting QB throwing him the ball and numerous premium targets drawing coverage away from him. They will say that Meachem, a former first round pick, is no better than the 5th best target on the Saints team. Normally I'd say that the former school of thought will win out, but it is hard to say. I think Meachem will end up with a 6 year $36 million contract, though given the uncertainty I'll guess his guarantee is low. Most players can expect about 40% of their contract guaranteed, but I think Meachem will be more like in the 25-30% guarantee range. I think Meachem will get a $10 million guarantee.

How will that affect the cap?

Meachem's guarantee should all come in the form of a signing bonus, meaning he'd count $1.6 million each year against the cap. Because of that it would be hard to cut him before year 3 or 4, meaning his first two year salaries would be essentially guaranteed as well, which is important to remember.

Year by Year breakdown: Sal=salary for that year, SB=signing bonus allotment, OB= any other bonuses, Cap hit=what he costs vs the cap, REL=what it would cost to cut a player in a given year

2012: Sal: $2.34 mil; SB: $1.66 mil; OB:$0; Cap hit: $4 million, REL: $10 million

2013: Sal: $2.34 mil; SB: $1.66 mil; OB: $0: Cap hit: $4 million; REL: $8.4 million

2014: Sal: $3.5 mil; SB: $1.66 mil; OB: $0; Cap hit: $5.16 million; REL: $6.8 million

2015: Sal: $4.5 mil, SB: $1.66 mil; OB: $1 mil, Cap hit: $7.16 million, REL: $5.2million

2016: Sal: $5.36 mil, SB: $1.66 mil; OB $0, Cap Hit: $7.02 million, REL: $3.3 million

2017: Sal: $ 7 mil; SB: $1.66 mil; OB $0; Cap Hit: $8.66 million; REL: $1.66 million

Steve Shoup will be covering Free Agency and the NFL Draft for his own site Fanspeak.com, but will provide write-ups on players for the Redskins here on Hogs Haven as well. Check out his NFL Draft Page for more details and updates throughout the draft season! HTTR!

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