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2021 NFL salary cap increased to at least $180 million

The NFL will finalize the salary cap over the next month.

A detailed view of the NFL logo on the field before the game between the Los Angeles Chargers and the New England Patriots at SoFi Stadium on December 06, 2020 in Inglewood, California. Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images

The NFL has informed its 32 teams that the 2021 salary cap will be at least $180 million. Last summer, the owners and players negotiated that the cap would be no less than $175 million to account for a decrease in revenue during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, additional negotiations between the owners and players have resulted in moving that minimum to at least $180 million.

The number is not yet finalized, with the two sides continuing negotiations. The final number will be set after 2020 revenue figures have been reviewed. The two sides could elect to borrow against future years with the expectation that once the pandemic eventually ends, revenue will increase. Additionally, there is the potential for new revenue streams — particularly with regard to live video streams of games — that could result in further boosts down the line.

The 2020 cap number came in at just under $200 million, so the 2021 number is going to be less no matter what. That will result in more veterans getting cut and players potentially taking one- or two-year deals to then hit the market once the cap has increased back to its previous pace.