Falcons General Manager Thomas Dimitroff said from the Scouting Combine last week that he is optimistic that the team can agree to a long-term deal with impending free agent Grady Jarrett, but didn’t say if that would happen before Tuesday’s deadline to use the franchise tag.
Head coach Dan Quinn said that using the tag was a real possibility and that may be the best way for the Falcons to proceed if they want to ensure Jarrett remains in Atlanta. D. Orlando Ledbetter of the Atlanta Journal Constitution reports that the Falcons and Jarrett are “not close” to striking a deal.
The franchise tag for Jarrett would come with a $15.209 million salary for 2019. That would eat up much of the $22 million or so in cap space that the Falcons are currently projected to have when the league year opens on March 13.
Jarrett is No. 4 on PFT’s list of this year’s top free agents and would likely have wide interest around the league if he were to hit the open market.