Monday marks the first day NFL teams can use the franchise tag as a way of preventing players from reaching free agency.
Don’t expect any news out of Allen Park on that front.
Detroit Lions general manager Martin Mayhew made it clear immediately after the season that he had no plans to use the franchise tag and reiterated that point last week when he spoke to reporters again.
“We’re not going to franchise anybody,” Mayhew said. “It doesn’t make sense for us right now.”
Last year, the Lions placed the non-exclusive franchise tag on defensive end Cliff Avril, which paid him $10.6 million in 2012. The team would have to pay him upwards of $12.6 million, or 120 percent of last year’s salary, if they wished to tag him again.
That isn’t cost effective for a team with so many other needs and unrestricted free agents on the roster.
There was a time this season when safety Louis Delmas seemed like a candidate for the franchise tag – especially since the franchise amount for the safety position (approximately $6.8 million) is the third-lowest next to kickers/punters and tight ends – but injury concerns have probably decreased his value on the open market and the Lions will try to sign him for a much lower annual amount.
Tags: Cliff Avril, Louis Delmas, Martin Mayhew
Posted in Lions Insider Tim Twentyman | 6 Comments »