NFL free agency is quickly approaching and with that comes lots of player movement around the league.
All this also means analyzing the salary cap for teams, especially for those who do not have much cap space available to spend on free agents. The more money allocated to a player at one position typically means less at others.
George Kittle Has Highest TE Cap Hit in NFL for 2022
George Kittle is arguably the best tight end in the NFL, so it’s no surprise he has the highest cap hit at the position at $16 million. He signed a five-year extension in August 2020, so he’ll be in San Fransisco through the 2025 season.
In 14 games in 2021, Kittle totaled 71 receptions for 910 yards and six touchdowns. His best season came in his second year, 2018, when he recorded 88 catches for 1,377 yards and five touchdowns.
The 49ers seem to be getting good value with Kittle’s contract, as at no point will his cap hit be higher than $18.1 million, which will come in the 2024 season.
What is Chiefs Tight End Travis Kelce’s Cap Hit For 2022?
While Kelce is right up there with Kittle in terms of being one of the best tight ends in the league, Kelce will have an $8.9 million cap hit in 2022, the seventh-highest at the position.
The 32-year-old just recorded his sixth straight 1,000-yard receiving season and had nine touchdowns, two shy of a career-high.
Kelce is signed in Kansas City through the 2025 season, but this is the last year his cap hit is in the single digits. It will jump to $14.7 million in 2023 and top out at $18.7 million in the final year of the deal.
Other Big TE Cap Hits For 2022
The New England Patriots have two players in the top three at the tight end position – Hunter Henry and Jonnu Smith. Both players were signed in the 2021 offseason. Henry will have a $15 million cap hit, while Smith will come in at $13.7.
In terms of the best value, that might be the Raiders with Darren Waller. Waller only has a $7 million cap hit for 2022, which is 10th in the league at the position. He’s taken his game to a much higher level in recent years after struggling to stay on the field early in his career.
The Browns’ Austin Hooper might be the most overvalued player at the position. He has a $13.3 million cap hit for 2022, the fourth-highest at the position, but hasn’t had more than 435 yards receiving the last two seasons.