The NFL’s franchise tag is un-American

What occurs each time an NFL quarterback resets the QB market? A comparatively crap quarterback will get overpaid. The explanation Daniel Jones netted a four-year $160 million deal after one good season, as an alternative of getting franchise tagged like he ought to’ve been, is Joe Burrow bought sufficient cash that, by comparability, Jones’ contract was comprehensible.

That is sort of occurring with extensive receivers as Justin Jefferson is anticipated to get $30 million yearly. Cincinnati Bengals receiver Ja’Marr Chase mentioned he’d like to attend till his former LSU teammate will get a bag to barter his subsequent deal, which is smart, as a result of that’s how enterprise in America works. See what your friends are price and gauge your worth accordingly.

Effectively, if the most effective gamers at their positions aren’t getting their full due, how is the market imagined to reset for them? The speaking level concerning the franchise tag is the NFLPA agreed to it as a way to acquire allowances in different areas, particularly for gamers who aren’t within the high percentile of the NFL.

But by delaying or flat out avoiding paying the most effective safeties, cornerbacks, offensive linemen, operating backs, and so forth., there are fewer examples to make use of as leverage throughout negotiations. Take Antoine Winfield Jr. He was All-Professional in 2023 after amassing 122 complete tackles, six sacks, six tackles for loss, three interceptions and a league-leading six compelled fumbles.

The Bucs tagged him as a result of, per his enjoying historical past and age, he was theoretically in line to reset the bar for safeties. If he’s paid like he’s imagined to be paid, the remainder of the safeties within the NFL can say, “Hey, I’m no Antoine Winfield Jr., however I present 75 p.c of the manufacturing he does, so I deserve 75 p.c of what he’s making and 75 p.c of the years on his deal.”

4 of the 9 gamers tagged this week have been cornerbacks and safeties. That’s 4 missed alternatives to spice up the marketplace for the subsequent crop of free brokers.

The franchise tag additionally permits entrance places of work to scoff at gamers who ask for multi-year contracts, which is harmful, as groupthink within the NFL typically quickly snowballs into collusion. It’s tough to make use of a one-year rental wage as some extent of reference as a result of the one motive these gamers are making that a lot is as a result of it’s a one-year, risk-free deal that by no means displays the precise market.

All these common managers act like they’re Albert Einstein as a result of the league tilted the sphere of their favor. Let’s see how they deal with assured contracts and just a little accountability like these doofuses over in MLB and the NBA.

The NFL wage cap went up $30 million this offseason and but gamers are nonetheless getting reduce left and proper so homeowners can get off of multi-year offers. Of the 25 gamers who scored essentially the most TDs in 2023, 13 have been operating backs. Christian McCaffrey is objectively among the best gamers within the sport, full cease.

The place would you rank Danny Dimes or Kirk Cousins? Wage caps and tides usually are not one in the identical, and it could shock nobody if the additional Monopoly cash goes straight to receivers, edge rushers and quarterbacks earlier than it raises salaries for the opposite teams.

The NFL goes to carry onto the franchise tag so long as doable as a result of it prevents “much less vital” place teams from inking the sorts of exorbitant contracts wanted to boost the bar for his or her friends. So when somebody hits you with a “Effectively, really, the franchise tag was agreed upon within the CBA …” level their lips within the path of Roger Goodell’s ass. 

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