The Buccaneers want to keep their core players together, giving them their best chance to repeat in 2021. But they likely won’t be able to keep all their free agents.
They apparently are ensuring they will keep receiver Chris Godwin.
The Bucs informed Godwin he is being franchise tagged, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports.
The Bucs could have tagged Shaq Barrett a second consecutive year. Barrett made $15.828 million under the franchise tag in 2020, so it would have cost $18.99 million to tag him again.
Instead, the team decided to use the tag on Godwin, which could mean a long-term deal is close with Barrett. Otherwise, Barrett will hit the free agent market next week.
Godwin, 25, made $4.65 million on his rookie deal. The franchise tag for receivers is $16.4 million for 2021.
Godwin said recently he wanted to stay with the Bucs but also wanted a long-term deal.
In four seasons, Godwin has 244 catches for 3,540 yards and 24 touchdowns. He made the Pro Bowl in 2019.