The most common question I heard in Indianapolis from executives: What will teams do with all of this cap space?
One theory: All of the cap space will encourage more trading. There aren’t great free agents available, but teams should have more salary flexibility to take on big contracts in trades, or deal for players wanting new contracts.
According to OvertheCap.com, 12 teams have more than $40 million in cap space. Even after applying franchise tags, just nine teams have less than $20 million to spend. In short: the salary cap shouldn’t get in the way of teams accomplishing their goals this offseason. This is a dramatic change from where the league was just a few years ago. But will teams be willing to rewrite the pay scales on these players?
There are fewer quality players about to hit free agency than ever before because teams have done a better job re-signing their own talent. All this cap space with so few top-level players available will test the discipline of general managers. That’s an explosive recipe for megadeals that will have agents and players smiling wide.
But 99 percent of the defenders Shaheen faced at the college level won’t spend time in a NFL training camp. So scouts were eager to see him in the context of this tight-end group, which is one of the most athletic and talented crops of tight ends the combine has ever seen.
And Shaheen worked out like he belonged.
At 278 pounds, the Ashland product ran a 4.79 40-yard dash with impressive results in the vertical (32.5 inches) and broad jump (10-foot-2).
And even more impressive, Shaheen was clean and efficient during the positional drills, especially the gauntlet, where he snatched the football and stayed controlled down the line.
Already considered a top-100 draft pick, Shaheen only helped himself in the eyes of NFL teams and it shouldn’t surprise anyone if he finds his way into the top 50 picks.