Today is the deadline for teams to place the franchise tag on one of their players. The Patriots were the first to place the tag and it was about as peaceful and friendly a process as you'll ever see. As most fans of the NFL know, the franchise tag does not play out like that normally. You get hold outs, trade demands and all around whiny behavior on both sides.
Given that the deadline to franchise a player is 1pm pacific today, I thought I'd have this post available for updates. If you read that a certain guy is tagged, feel free to throw it in the comments here, instead of opening a new FanPost. There are several FanPosts open on some players and feel free to keep chatting in there. This is more the general catch-all. I'll be away from my computer until close to the deadline so I won't be updating this until then. For now, here's the list of franchised folks:
Oshiomogho Atogwe – St. Louis Rams
Antonio Bryant –Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Matt Cassell – New England Patriots
Karlos Dansby – Arizona Cardinals
Shayne Graham – Cincinnati Bengals
Brandon Jacobs – New York Giants
Michael Koenen – Atlanta Falcons
Darren Sproles – San Diego Chargers
Terrell Suggs – Baltimore Ravens
At the moment I believe these are the only players to be officially tagged. There are several other players very likely to be tagged but it just hasn't happened yet. Some possibilities thrown around include Nnamdi Asomugha, Julius Peppers and Dunta Robinson. And, most people are aware of this, but for those that aren't, the Titans can not franchise Albert Haynesworth because of a provision in his contract.
Several of the folks that have been franchised or possibly will be franchised have been on the wish list of some folks around here for some time. Atogwe would have been a nice option, as would have Suggs. As great as they might be going forward, I'd be hard-pressed to give up two first round picks for them (or any other potential franchised player).
The argument for giving up the picks is that even though the 2009 pick is high, the talent could conceivably be enough to boost you to the point that the 2010 pick isn't quite as high. I'm not saying the addition would be enough to make that difference. Rather, it's just one argument for it. Beyond that, given the money that would be required on top of the picks and I'm just not feeling it.
Barrows had an interesting point in his mention about Suggs being franchised: "But who knows, tying down Suggs may free up another Ravens linebacker, Bart Scott ..."
I hadn't given Bart Scott a ton of thought in part because I was figuring more on the return of Takeo Spikes. However, Scott is certainly a very talented option to pair with Patrick Willis. If he could be signed at a relatively reasonable price I could see the value. If he's going to cost a bit more, is it worth it for a guy who clears holes for someone else? I'd say quite possibly yes given the prior struggles the team had in getting a legit Ted linebacker. The answer to that question won't be answered for another week or more. But, just one more bit of food for thought.