Cowboys use franchise tag on Anthony Spencer


The Cowboys apparently went back and forth on whether to use the franchise tag on linebacker Anthony Spencer.

In the end, they went with the time-honored reality known in most circles as “use it or lose it.”

The team has announced that Spencer is only the third franchise player in franchise history, joining Flozell Adams (2002) and Ken Hamlin (2008).

Spencer joined the team in the first-round of the 2007 draft.  The Cowboys had traded out of round one with the Browns, who took quarterback Brady Quinn.  And then the Cowboys traded back in with the Eagles, who took quarterback Kevin Kolb.

He’ll be eligible for a one-year guaranteed contract that is expected to be in the range of $8.8 million.  Spencer could try to make the Terrell Suggs argument that he’s actually a defense end, which carries a franchise tender of $10.6 million.

21 responses to “Cowboys use franchise tag on Anthony Spencer

  1. This guy is a joke. It is 100% untrue that he plays the run so well. One writer says it and everyone piggy backs off of this unsubstantiated claim. How about backing it up with stats from other 3-4 strongside OLBs? As a Cowboys fan who hasn’t missed any of his games in the last 5 years I can tell you that isn’t true. He never holds the edge and is not as good in coverage as everyone says he is. And perhaps if I’m delusional, you could explain how great the Cowboys have been while he was this dominant run stopper? Seems like we could do better with a pass rusher who can’t play the run. Overrated bum who admitted to taking plays off. File him under the Spears, Scandrick, Sensabaugh category of mediocre long terms who will never win.

  2. I hope the Eagles Franchise…..Casey Matthews….LOL The Eagles could easily have had this guy but, Reid has no respect for linebackers. This is why its due or die for Reid. Thank God.

  3. “Spencer could try to make the Terrell Suggs argument that he’s actually a defense end, which carries a franchise tender of $10.6 million.”

    He could try, but he would fail.

    In any case, I suspect they’ll have a long term deal worked out with him before the start of Free Agency on March 13th.

  4. I watched Spencer for two years at Purdue. We always thought that if you could combine his non-stop motor with Ray Edwards’ physical tools, you’d have a HOFer.

    Good for him.

  5. This is stupid. I am amazed at how Spencer keeps making people think he has value. He NEVER sees a double team, rarely ever gets the chip block helper, and still can’t do a darn thing. Can’t get his hands up in the passing lane, can’t stay home or contain, and is always one step shy of the QB.

  6. The problem is I don’t think he can get better than he currently is. I Don’t hate his guts like I hate the entire secondary, but not worth more than 4m a yr

  7. You know, typical fan knowledge suggests this is just Jones screwing up. But a poster at another board made some good points:

    You guys kill me. In order to criticize the decision to tag Spencer you have to understand what it means.

    FIRST of all, Spencer has to sign the tender. Until he does, we can do anything we like; (i.e. Go after Williams or Draft his replacement). Spencer is not going to sign his tender right away, because there is the possibility of this situation playing out and him hitting the market. If he does, he will get a better deal or slightly less than per year but a long term deal. He will wait to see what happens before signing, allowing himself to make some $.

    SECOND, regardless of what you think, this was not JJ rewarding mediocrity. This was JJ covering his a$$ while allowing more time to improve the pass rush. Garrett had a lot to do with this, there is no doubt it my mind. By tagging Spencer it gives Dallas the room to work without having to worry about filling a void. That is the difference, with Spencer on the team for next season. Knowing that he HAS to be on the team, they will work towards improving at OLB rather than being forced to fill a hole at OLB. IF they draft an OLB at #14 or sign Williams, they can still let Spencer go.

    For those of you who would have let him walk to begin with, you are foolish because what would you have in his place? You are banking on getting an OLB at #14 or sign Williams? There is no certainty by doing that. What if Williams gets $20 million/year and Ingram and Upshaw are gone by #14??? With Spencer gone, where would be, hoping to find a decent OLB in the second round or hoping Butler works out?

    THIRD, this moves allows us to go hard after G/C and CB (Nicks and Carr) in FA. By filling those HOLES in FA it allows us to draft for OLB at #14. If not there, then we go for Decastro or BPA.

    The whole point behind this is to fill holes and improve. CB and G are holes and OLB needs improvement. It is important to understand the difference.

  8. Holy $h.. The idiot moves keep coming. Cowboys fans, happy free agency!…..8.8 mil in wasted cap money for a guy to get you 4 sacks a year…Anthony Spencer isn’t terrible, but he is not worth this tag. I would have let him leave and get 3 guys to rotate at his spot before giving him this kind of money. So let’s see, it was guestimated that the Cowboys had roughly 12.5mil in cap space minus 8.8mil for Spencer equals 3.7mil left to basically miss out on Brandon Carr, Cortland Finnegan, Tracy Porter….and now say bye bye to Laurent Robinson. Jerry and Stephen Jones are the biggest morons in NFL personnel history.

  9. I think it comes down to the fact that there isn’t a lot of options for replacing him. Williams is unreasonable, Avril got the tag and you can’t guarantee ur guy will be there at 14. Now if they get some help in the secondary and interior line they can take the best player available in draft. Tell me who to replace him with for 8 mil a year who will def be better?

  10. Just like Romo, give me a better option and I’ll make a move, until then. He is my guy 😦

  11. Boooooo!!!! He’s not that good people and he’s a quiter… JJ needs to stop “playing” GM like a little girl plays dressup… The only person I would give him credit for is Romo but that was Parcells…

  12. “Holy $h.. The idiot moves keep coming. Cowboys fans, happy free agency!…..8.8 mil in wasted cap money for a guy to get you 4 sacks a year”.

    Uhhhhh…. did you happen to read ANYTHING preventdefense wrote directly above your post, you moron? UNTIL (and if) Spencer signs his tender, THEN he gets paid that amount. The Cowboys are still going to try to put together a long term deal for him IF they do decide to keep him, so keep your inept comments to your self, bro.

    In addition to that, the Cowboys will have well over 20 million with the restructured contracts that will be taken care of, not to mention a possible increase in the cap of a few million more to help offset player benefit cost increases. DB Brandon Carr is absolutely on the radar, and if they can land him and a guy like Nicks/Grubbs at G, and/or a C like Wells or Myers, then it is time for the draft. I still target DeCastro at 14 (if he is there), S Mark Barron possibly in rd 2 (if available), and depth at ILB, CB, DT, CB, S, TE, QB depending on FA acquisitions. All are needs, but seriously, the Cowboys will make very astute moves in FA and in the draft. But, a hater like you wouldn’t recognize if it kicked you in the ass. Haters like you really need to get a football life, and worry about your own team issues, Einstein.


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