How did that huge 2024 LA Rams salary cap projected surplus dwindle so quickly?

A year ago, the LA Rams bit the bullet in dead salary cap expense to free up over $60 million of surplus cap space in 2024. But nlow that we are in 2024, much of that surplus has vanished. What happened?

Kevin Demoff, Los Angeles Rams
Kevin Demoff, Los Angeles Rams / Ric Tapia/GettyImages
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Okay, here we go. That annual reminder that even in the NFL, Cash is King. And whenever the LA Rams finish one season, and head into an off-season, inevitably we find ourselves drawn to discussing the LA Rams salary cap situation. More often than not, the conversation begins because the Rams are projected to be well over the salary cap spending limits for a new NFL season,

Even as late as mid-March 2023, the Rams were over the 2023 salary cap. That is not the news that fans want to hear after a 5-12 NFL season, and it certainly led to some painful and very difficult decisions that followed.

If you recall, the LA Rams organization had two options. In the first option, the team could kick the can down the road in terms of salary cap repercussions, and try to go into the 2023 NFL season with one more veteran-laden Rams roster with the hopes of returning to the 2024 NFL Playoffs. In the second option, the Rams could bite the salary cap bullet, shed as many lucrative player contracts as possible, and focus on hitting bedrock on the financial front to be more competitive in 2024.

The LA Rams opted to bite the bullet, and that resulted in the team:

  1. Trading away DB Jalen Ramsey
  2. Releasing ILB Bobby Wagner
  3. Trading away WR Allen Robinson
  4. Cutting OLB Leonard Floyd
  5. Allowing all but two veteran free agents to sign elsewhere

Of course, that ultimately prompted the LA Rams COO, Kevin Demoff, to hit social media to reassure Rams fans that this was not a team in free fall and that the tough times in 2023 would lead to a glorious 2024, with more than $60 million of available salary cap space.

But the only trouble is, we are now in 2024, and the projected $60+ million in salary cap space is currently estimated as just under $28 million by OverTheCap.com, and at just over $35 million by Spotrac.com. So who is lying?