In the NFL, franchise tags are used by teams to retain their top players without negotiating a long-term contract. Players who receive a franchise tag are typically compensated with an average of $14.5 million over the two years but can earn up to $22.4 million.
Situations with NFL players who have been issued a franchise tag
- The biggest optimism in terms of a long-term deal involves #Chiefs left tackle Orlando Brown. He hasn’t signed his tag yet and hasn’t been heard from in negotiations, but insiders believe Monday-Tuesday will be crucial days. Brown is owed $16.6M on the tag, but the lineman wants top-5 money – that’s about $22M a year. Considering Kansas City traded Brown from Baltimore in April 2021, giving up four picks for the lineman, including a first-round pick, it’s unlikely the office wants to lose the starting left tackle by forcing him to boycott camp or even the season.
- Tight end Cowboys Dalton Schultz has signed his tag, so he’s secured $10.9M for the 2022 season. Basically, players at that position don’t get much, and Dallas has the third most free money “under the cap” in the league ($22.5M). So a long-term contract isn’t out of the question here either.
- As for Dolphin’s tight end, Mike Gesicki has a similar situation: the tag is signed, and Miami has the money ($16.5M). A contract has not been ruled out.
- The most complicated story is with Bengals safeties Jesse Bates. First, he missed all offseason activity, and second, no one expects to see him in training camp unless a new contract is signed. Bates did not sign his franchise tag, which guarantees him $12.9M for the 2022 season. The problem is that last year, when the quarterback helped Cincinnati get to the Super Bowl; he earned only $2.4M. Bates wants top-shelf compensation. Like Minky Fitzpatrick’s money ($18.2M a year). Cap space Bengals ($15.8M) allows for an “under the cap” top contract, but the office doesn’t seem to be burning with the desire to do so. It is highly doubtful that the parties can bridge the gap between $12.9M and $18.2M in the remaining few days.
Besides those four, four other players have been franchise tagged, but all of them (Devante Adams, Cam Robinson, Chris Godwin, David Njoku) have safely signed new deals.
The deadline on long-term contracts for tagged players is July 15. After that date, the player either agrees to sign a franchise tag or misses the season and becomes a free agent in 2023.