Franchise tag tug-of-war could be coming

With the Colts and Pats content to let their franchise quarterbacks play out the final years of their respective contracts, each team can take some solace in the availability of the franchise tag.

Neither Peyton Manning nor Tom Brady will get a crack at the open market if the Colts and the Pats opt to slap them with the primary tool for restricting the mobility of veteran players.  And, as Albert Breer of the Boston Globe explains in an article that takes an in-depth look at the challenges the Pats are facing when it comes to signing Brady, both teams undoubtedly will use the franchise tag.

But this assumes that a franchise tag will be available in 2011.  As we explained earlier this year, uncertainty already exists as to the status of the franchise tag upon conclusion of the current CBA.  More importantly, the status of Manning and Brady could create a wedge among the owners at the bargaining table.

What if the union proposes moving the threshold for restricted free agency from four years to five, in exchange for the elimination of the franchise tag?  For the league generally, that could be regarded as a good deal.  For the Colts and Pats, it would mean watching Brady and Manning hit the open market.

It’s all the more reason for the Colts and the Patriots to get these guys signed, sooner rather than later.  Otherwise, the union eventually could put Indy owner Jim Irsay and Pats owner Robert Kraft in a very delicate situation — and they both could be compelled at some point to expose their marquee players to the open market in the name of the greater good.

We don’t know how it’s all going to play out.  But it could be fun to watch it play out.

17 responses to “Franchise tag tug-of-war could be coming

  1. The players should just ask Julius Peppers (franchised back-to-back) whether the tag is good or bad.
    Anybody with a calculator will see that the franchise tag is great for the player. Peppers got about 40 Mio $ for two years. All full guaranteed for skill and injury. No “real” deal would ever paid him that much money per year.
    And, it is economically impossible to franchise a player a third time, because that means guaranteeing ~22 Mio (much more in Mannning’s case) for one player without being able to perform any cap shenanigans on it.
    And, just ask D’Brick about how phony numbers are in “real” contracts.

  2. I am not so sure about Brady and the Pats, but even if Manning became a free agent the Colts would still re-sign him. The Colts ownership/management are in love with Manning and Manning loves the Colts and Indy – no matter what the financial environment is you can bet that those two will get a deal done and neither said is worried about it! So don’t think for one second that Irsay will be in a delicate situation because of Manning. As for Brady and the Pats, Brady is frustrated that he hasn’t been able to get a new deal and considering that Patriots don;t believe in loyalty to veteran players (even stars) but rather replacing aging talent with younger talent before the older talent is over the hill, those two might be destined for a break up. So it is possible that Kraft might be in tight situation balancing his current needs with his long-term goals (vis-a-vis Brady and the CBA), but considering his philosophy for building and maintaining a team it might not be that tough of an internal struggle for him either. He might not envision Brady in a Pats uniform longer than a couple more years anyway.

  3. hey fraud, do you really think a franchise tag would keep other teams from signing manning or brady? 2 first round picks for 2 sure hall of famers with ~5 good years left.
    you’re an idiot.

  4. I honestly think Manning would sign the first deal the Colts offer him on the free market, provided the deal isn’t entirely blown out of the water by a potential SB team.

  5. Maybe Manning and Brady should start some collusion of their own.
    Can you imagine the court of public oppinion if Bradford get $80mil with $45 guarantied, and Manning and Brady decide to not report to camp this year?
    Oh I bet the backlash from local fans and media would force contract offers for both players. The thought of those two teams without those two QB’s is frightenning.
    Can you say last place in respective divisions???
    You might want to do a write up on this angle Mike.

  6. Brees, Rodgers, Manning, Rivers, are all better than Brady.
    Watch Brady again this season looking terrified whenever a defender gets near him. Hopefully we won’t have to watch him cry and whine to officials and do his ridiculous hop on one leg whenever a rusher brushes his legs.

  7. Peppers was franchised for 1 year. He then signed with the Bears for a 20 million first year deal. That gave him 40 mil over 2 years. He just didnt get it from the Panthers alone.

  8. afiresnake says:
    July 25, 2010 1:14 PM
    The players should just ask Julius Peppers (franchised back-to-back) whether the tag is good or bad.
    Peppers was tagged for only one season.
    You know less about the Panthers than Steve Smith’s bitch.

  9. andy3331, you’re the idiot.
    There is the “exclusive rights” franchise tag that forbids any team talking to the tagged player. The player slapped with the exclusive tag cannot be moved for any compensation at all.
    Next time look up the facts before shooting your mouth off, twat.

  10. Poor little omom,
    Still bitter about losing the SB in Jax? Watching your franchise QB puke up and down the field? Watching the worst clock management in the history of the SB by Andy Reid?
    Enjoy the season when #5 sweeps the Eagles and finish in last place which is not uncommon in Arlen Spector land. Eagle fans are used to losing.
    Take a trip up to Foxboro to see what a Lombardi looks like since there never has been one in the history of your team.

  11. if it goes it will not go away next year. it will be phased out, or kept with modifications of how it can be used.

  12. I think Brady will end up in San Francisco eventually. I’m gonna laugh when there is no more franchise tag.

  13. Why Smithopher?
    Because the Jets have not had a franchise QB since Joe Namath ?
    The NFL is very impressed with Sanchez and his 60 QB rating !

  14. andy3331 said: Hey fraud, do you really think a franchise tag would keep other teams from signing manning or brady?
    Ummm, it did in 2004 when manning played out his last contract and was franchised. As raybin pointed out, you are the idiot.

  15. Unless there is no cap. No team with a chance of winning that doesn’t already have a quarterback is going to have the cap room to sign Manning.

  16. Funny how any Manning contract discussion makes no mention of his unhappiness or holding out and it’s linked with Brady’s situation. Yet any Brady story about his contract only talks about unhappiness and holding out with no mention of Manning at all.
    With regards to Peppers, he’s from NC, played college at UNC, and played in the NFL in NC. From what I remember, he was sick of NC! He wanted to experience something other than NC! He was going somewhere else regardless of what Carolina offered him unless it was stratospheric.

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