Even if Cardinals linebacker Karlos Dansby were playing at a level that would merit consideration for the one-year franchise tag (and given the magnitude of the standard franchise tender for linebackers, he’s not — and he knows it), the Cardinals wouldn’t be able to tag him.
Unless they want to pay him quarterback money.
Thanks to the 2012 Drew Brees grievance, which determined that franchise tags stack even when not used consecutively or by the same team, Dansby would be treated as a third-time tag recipient.
Coincidentally, Dansby was tagged two prior times by the Cardinals, before joining the Dolphins as a free agent. In 2013, the Dolphins cut Dansby, and he returned to the Cardinals on a one-year deal.
Before the Brees grievance, it was assumed that a player’s franchise-tag clock reset to zero after signing a non-franchise-tender deal. It doesn’t. So, like 49ers kicker Phil Dawson (who was tagged twice by the Browns), a tag for Danbsy would require him to be paid at the quarterback level of the tag, with the number calculated based on the average of the five highest-paid quarterbacks in 2013.
Which means there’s no way the Cardinals would even give passing consideration to tagging Dansby.