When news broke of the NFL's increased salary cap for the 2015 season to $143.28 million, some were surprised more than others. The league's total cap amount has increased by $10 million dollars in each of the past two years, thanks in part to large television deals.
The 32 NFL teams are in continual meetings with their collective staffs, solidifying plans of how to spend their available dollars, including in free agency, which begins March 10, the start of the new league year.
Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff said his team's offseason plan for free agency and the NFL Draft is based upon finding the perfect fits for Dan Quinn's team, including pass rushers.
"I feel very confident that given Dan's expertise on pass rush and his approach that we're going to find very good football players on both sides of the board," Dimitroff said. "He's going to get the most out of who we do bring in as pass rushers."
Defensive linemen and linebackers performed on-field workouts on Sunday at the 2015 Scouting Combine. Check out pictures from the fifth day in Indianapolis.
During the free agency period, there will be plenty of high-profile names on the board, along with some players who don't necessarily steal headlines. Dimitroff says Quinn's previous experience in a Seattle Seahawks organization, known for its successful ability to sign players deemed "mid-tier" and developing each into star performers, is already paying off for the Falcons.
"One of the things about free agency, there tends to be a ramped-up expectation (about signing certain players)," Dimitroff said. "Dan's going to make sure that's not the issue here, that's not the approach. It's about making sure we get who fits into our system. We're not going to be making a big deal about it. It's not all about pomp and circumstance with our acquisitions. It's about making sure that they fit in with this football team."