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  • Writer's pictureSpencer Baucke

February 2021 Challenge - Salary Cap & NFL Draft

Updated: Feb 3, 2021

My hands-down favorite part of running #SportsVizSunday has been the opportunity to meet the amazing people that make up our community, including the two gents who are providing this month's data set, Will Strouse and Jeff Plattner. So without further ado, here is this month's challenge announcement from Will Strouse himself.


While the Bucs and Chiefs are focused on the last game of the year, the front offices of 30 other franchises are trying to solve the same problem. How to build a championship roster this offseason. In the past, teams have approached the task of composing their rosters in various ways. Spending more money on offense or defense or the same on both, having the patience and coaching staff required to build primarily through the draft, or focusing on big name talent and free agency, 2021 brings a brand new challenge.

For the first time since the salary cap was introduced at $34.6 million dollars per team in 1994, the cap is projected to decrease from $198.2 million per team in 2020 to $176 million in 2021. Teams will be forced to make difficult decisions about how they value draft picks this year, which veteran players they can afford to keep, and which free agents they bring in.

Former Tableau Featured Author Jeff Plattner #Vikings teamed up with Boston TUG co-lead and Tableau TUG Ambassador Will Strouse #Steelers to put together a collection of data sets focused on this very problem.

The data includes:

  • NFL salary cap figures by team/player/position for the 2018, 2019, and 2020 seasons from

  • NFL future salary cap considerations by team/player/position from the 2021 to the 2026 league year from

  • NFL Draft details by team/player/position from 1996 to 2020 from

  • NFL Win/Loss/Tie records by team for the 2018, 2019, and 2020 seasons from

Link to the data here!

Huge shout out to Tyler Mangini from the Boston TUG community and Amazon Robotics who helped gather the salary cap data and recently published this great visualization covering the impact of COVID-19 on injury reports in 2020 and how it compares to previous years

Now lace your spikes, buckle up those chin straps, and devise a championship level data visualization focusing on the business of building an NFL roster!

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