One franchise tag was enough for the Bills and safety Jairus Byrd.
General Manager Doug Whaley announced today that the team wasn’t using the franchise tag on any of their players, setting the Pro Bowl safety into the open market.
Whaley said last week the team was both willing and able to tag Byrd, but that now sounds like nothing more than a temporary negotiating ploy.
Tagging Byrd again this year would have cost them $8.3 million, after he made $6.9 million on the tag last year.
It also opens the door for the Browns to pursue Byrd, given his success in Mike Pettine’s Bills defense last year.
The Browns held the door open for safety T.J. Ward when they used the transition tag on center Alex Mack, and Byrd would be a like-for-like replacement if Ward left.