Watson isn’t playing this year and that’s why Cleveland structured his deal to where he makes almost nothing in the first year, which is a dick move
I had similar thoughts but then determined what contract restructuring to allow for more cap room typically looks like. It's basically converting salary into bonuses, which is not an issue if you intend to keep paying said player and have no concerns that you might have to trade or release them. In other words, having a team come to you asking to restructure it indicates that you are so solidly in their plans that they want to make more commitments to you in order to also help their cap situation. Matt Ryan's newly restructured deal with the Colts does something similar.
I think that the NFL needs to restructure the way that their fines and suspensions should be structured, where they don't just deny you game checks but also guaranteed money. Granted, that would require all future player contracts be structured that way and any current deal could not be affected in that way because of the language of the existing deals. The bad taste people are going to get in their mouth from Watson getting paid an obscene amount of money to sit at home and think about what he has done could lead to such a change, though I have my doubts.
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