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Franchise tag isn’t a viable option for 49ers to keep Phil Dawson

Dawson Getty Images

In recent years, more and more teams have used the franchise tag on kickers in punters, in large part because the amount of the franchise tender for specialists remains at or below the market value for high-end kickers.  (In contrast, the market value for most other positions lags behind the tag.)

As a result, the 49ers — whose coach openly has lobbied for kicker Phil Dawson to stay — could be inclined to use the tag.

But there’s a problem.  Because Dawson was tagged twice by the Browns, in 2011 and 2012, the use of the tag by the 49ers in 2014 would count as a third career tag, entitling Dawson to the quarterback franchise tender.

A grievance filed by Saints quarterback Drew Brees in 2012 triggered the ruling that franchise tags stack from team to team.  It helped Brees leverage a better deal from the Saints because he would have been entitled to a 44-percent raise in 2013 over his 2012 tender.  It also helps any player in the future who faces the prospect of a third career tag.

For Dawson, it means 49ers won’t tag him.  Unless they want to pay $16 million next year for a kicker.

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9 Responses to “Franchise tag isn’t a viable option for 49ers to keep Phil Dawson”
  1. tv426 says: Feb 11, 2014 7:44 AM

    Wow – $16 mil for a kicker! I’m sure the Whiners will do it considering they used to cheat on the cap all the time and the NFL did pretty much nothing to them for it (and Dallas).

  2. barkymingo says: Feb 11, 2014 8:16 AM

    As a Browns fan, he’s worth it!!!

    I was really rooting for SF so Phil could get a ring this year.

  3. amazingguy101 says: Feb 11, 2014 9:44 AM

    wow just wow on that much money

  4. sonoco says: Feb 11, 2014 10:24 AM

    I think he’ll re-sign. Two years at around $3 million per. He made around $2.5 last year.

  5. tap79 says: Feb 11, 2014 10:45 AM

    Kudos to SF wasting cap space on this! This will help ensure the Hawks stay the dominate team for seasons to come.

  6. oldcracker says: Feb 11, 2014 11:52 AM

    Wish he was still in Cleveland but, what he’s gone through here and wouldn’t wish the Haslam Hillbilly Circus on him.

    Good for the 9′ers. Good luck, Phil!

  7. beavertonsteve says: Feb 11, 2014 12:08 PM

    The Niners could try a reverse Jimmy Graham argument here and say that on 95% of plays he isn’t even a football player.

  8. bubba9er says: Feb 11, 2014 12:27 PM

    An excellent kicker is hard to come by. Phil Dawson is an excellent kicker. I don’t remember him missing one kick this year. Not more than a couple at the very most, and those would have been over 50 yards… Just come on back Phil!

  9. leanback360 says: Feb 11, 2014 3:06 PM

    I’m taking up kicking

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