The Dallas Cowboys are believed to be close to $25 million above the NFL's projected salary cap.
The team obviously needs to make decisions on how to eliminate that bloat. Enter defensive end DeMarcus Ware and wide receiver Miles Austin, two well-paid veterans who have the potential to become cap casualties in Big D.
Ware and Austin have a combined cap number of $24.25 million. If the Cowboys cut ties with both players (Austin would have to be designated as a post-June 1 cut) they would save approximately $13 million this season. Dallas executive vice president Stephen Jones said the team has yet to make a decision on either player.
"We're still gathering all of our information and getting the lay of the land," Jones said, according to The Dallas Morning News. "Obviously, DeMarcus had a hell of a career, but when we're in the cap situation that we're in and obviously counting as much as he is obviously you have to look at it along with several others."
Asked about Austin, Jones replied: "Great career and he has a big cap number, and we have to take a look at it."
It's important to separate the two players in this discussion. Austin has struggled to stay healthy and productive since signing a big contract in 2010. His release makes sense: Our own Gregg Rosenthal lists Austin at the top of the list of notable NFC players who are strong candidates to be released.
Ware doesn't show up anywhere on Rosenthal's list, and he would count as a much bigger surprise to be sent to the street. Ware is coming off the worst season of his career, but it's hard to imagine Jerry Jones cutting ties with one of his greatest draft day victories.