The Bears have elected to give defensive tackle Henry Melton the franchise tag, Sean Jensen of the Chicago Sun-Times reported Friday night.
Not long after Jensen’s report, Melton wrote on Twitter, “Good to be a Bear for another year hopefully we can get a long-term deal done soon! #BearDown #FranchiseTag.” Later Friday night, the Bears confirmed they had used the tag on the fourth-year defensive tackle from Texas.
Melton, 26, has made an impact as a pass rusher for Chicago, notching a combined 13 sacks in each of the last two seasons. According to NFL.com, the non-exclusive franchise tag for a defensive tackle is worth $8.45 million in 2013. It’s unclear whether Melton received the exclusive or non-exclusive tag.
The Bears join the Broncos (Ryan Clady), Bills (Jairus Byrd), Colts (Pat McAfee) and Bengals (Michael Johnson) as clubs to have used the franchise tag this offseason.