The Denver Broncos are in the process of signing their 2018 Draft picks, which will impact the amount of cap space the team will have — though not in ways that some people may think.

The Broncos made 10 selections in the NFL Draft who have a combined 2018 cap hit of $11M upon first glance. The team has about $14.5M in space left, so one might think that the Broncos will have to start cutting players just to fit the Draft picks under the cap.

But that isn’t the case — at least not yet. That’s because during the offseason, only the top-51 salary cap hits count toward the cap. It’s not until after training camp and the preseason are completed, and rosters are trimmed to 53 players, plus a 10-player practice squad (along with any players who are placed on injured reserve), that every player’s cap hit counts.

This means that, once the Broncos sign one of their 2018 Draft picks, a player with a low cap number won’t count toward the cap for the time being. In most cases, these players will have cap hits of less than $600,000, though in a few cases, their cap hits will be slightly higher.

For the Broncos, the approximate 2018 cap hits for each draft pick are: 

Bradley Chubb: $4.95M

Courtland Sutton: $1.24M

Royce Freeman: $729,000

Isaac Yiadom: $670,000

Josey Jewell: $658,000

DaeSean Hamilton: $650,000

Troy Fumagalli: $550,000

Sam Jones: $522,000

Keishawn Bierria: $509,000

David Williams: $503,000

As you can see, the cap hits for Fumagalli, Jones, Bierria and Williams won’t count toward the cap for the time being — though they will if they make the final roster. So the effective cap space that the Draft picks will take up during the offseason, with the top-51 cutoff in place, actually

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