The pending departure of
That factors in the rule of 51 during the offseason where the top 51 salary-cap figures are accounted for to compute salary-cap room with a $405,000 salary-cap figure being added to the list with Leach leaving.
The Ravens will need a $1.203 million salary-cap figure in the first year for unsigned first-round safety
Under the NFL slotting system, Elam is slated to sign a four-year, $6.767 million contract that will include a $3.301 million signing bonus.
The Ravens will have roughly $5.37 million in salary-cap space once Elam is signed.
The top salary-cap figures currently on the roster, including Leach: outside linebacker
What will the Ravens do with the excess salary-cap space?
They could go for a veteran wide receiver at some point, put the money toward an extension for a younger player in the final year of his contract -- like restricted free agent tight end
The Ravens are facing a tight salary-cap situation in 2014.
Ngata carries a team-high $16 million salary-cap figure next year and Suggs has a $12.4 million salary-cap figure for a combined $28.4 million in cap commitments. Both players, especially Suggs (partially torn Achilles tendon, torn biceps), are coming off seasons hampered by injuries.
The other high salary-cap figures on the Ravens' books for 2014 include: Flacco ($14.8 million), Webb ($10.5 million), Rice ($8.75 million) and Yanda ($8.45 million). Six key players would count for a combined $70.9 million in salary-cap space for the 2014 NFL fiscal year.
The Ravens have 53 players under contract for 2014 for a total salary-cap commitment of $120.788 million. The NFL salary cap limit for 2013 is $123 million, and the salary cap is expected to remain relatively flat for the next few years.
With pending free agents like Pitta and tight end
During a recent Baltimore Sun Sports Forum, assistant general manager
"I think the thing we want to do is just live in the moment right now," DeCosta said. "Those guys are under contract. They're all outstanding players. They're some of the very best players at their position in the league. We just want to play this year. We'll let those decisions wait until the future.
"We have a lot of flexibility with the cap. Pat Moriarty and Ozzie Newsome do a phenomenal job of making tough decisions. We've made a lot of tough decisions over the last couple of years. They're hard decisions to make. Any time you have to cut a player or let a player go in free agency because of the salary cap, it's tough to do that."
During an offseason in which linebacker
"We talk a lot about these decisions," DeCosta said. "We spent a lot of time talking about what our offseason was going to be during the season and right after the season and we try to do what's best for the Ravens in the short term and also the long term. So, we'll see how it plays out."