Get your nerd on: Franchise-tag talk

Published on February 18, 2011 by     

Seattle has a costly question to answer between now and Feb. 24, which is the deadline for applying the franchise tag to players.

Will Seattle opt not to use the franchise tag for the first time since 2006 when the Seahawks instead opted to apply the transition tag to Steve Hutchinson, resulting in an unmitigated disaster.

Seattle’s most likely candidates are defensive tackle Brandon Mebane or kicker Olindo Mare, who was tagged by the Seahawks last year.

In the case of Mebane, it’s a costly question. Very costly.

The NFL has not released the franchise-tag values for 2011, but Jason LaConfora of NFL.com cited a source detailing a spike in value for defensive tackles.

Those three defensive tackles who received the franchise tag in 2010 received a one-year offer worth more than $7 million. In 2011, LaCanfora reported the cost for a franchise-tagged defensive tackle will be north of $12 million.

Wow.

Again, those values have not been announced, but if the league’s official Web site is reporting it, pretty safe to assume that’s not out of left field.

There has been no indication the Seahawks are planning to apply the franchise tag to Mebane, and there has been no movement toward an extension. But it’s also equally evident Mebane’s importance to a defensive line whose shallow depth was illustrated clearly in 2010.

Mebane’s value goes beyond Seattle, though. He plays a position that is becoming increasingly expensive across the league to the point that the franchise tag is no longer as economical of a solution. Certainly not like it was last year. Six players were designated with the franchise tag in 2010. Three played defensive tackle.

Going back to 2007, 46 players have been designated with a franchise tag. Seven were defensive tackles, which matches the most at any one position.

Now, that doesn’t mean that defensive tackle is the most valuable position in the league. That’s not what the use of the franchise tag shows. Rather, it shows a team saw the franchise tag as a price it was willing to pay at that position.

Now, stick with me for a second. But look at quarterback, which is universally considered the most important position in football yet only three quarterbacks have received the franchise tag going back to 2007. More kickers and punters have received the designation. Now, does that mean kickers and/or punters are as valuable? Hardly. It means that teams see the franchise-tag cost for a kicker/punter — which is the lowest of any position — was deemed a reasonable, cost-efficient use of money by a team as opposed to agreeing to a long-term contract with a specific player.

Similarly, there’s no one who will argue that a left tackle is less valuable in today’s NFL than defensive tackle. Quite the opposite.

Yet only two offensive tackles have received the franchise-tag designation going back to 2007 compared to seven defensive tackles.

There’s two potential reasons for that difference:

1) The span of time a defensive tackle plays at an elite level is much shorter than a left tackle.

Why pay a long-term contract to a top-shelf defensive tackle if he’s only going to play at a top-shelf level for a year or two. But there’s a long line of defensive tackles who have long, extended periods of success whether it’s the Patriots’ Vince Wilfork, Pat and Kevin Williams of Minnesota or even going old school with Ted Washington.

2) The franchise-tag price for a defensive tackle is below the actual value of that player’s role.

Teams don’t apply franchise tags as a favor. They do it because that player’s value to the team is such that it’s worth paying that player the average of the top-five salaries at that position as opposed to risking losing him for nothing.

Now, why would that happen as frequently at defensive tackle as any other position? If the franchise-tag value was lower than the open-market value of that player, applying the franchise tag would be relatively economical.

The fact the price for franchise-tagging a defensive tackle is expected to spike this year shows the marketplace is correcting that disparity between the position’s value to the team and the price of tagging a defensive tackle.

And that brings us back to Mebane, a four-year starter. He is an important player to Seattle at an increasingly valuable position in the league and stands on the brink of free agency.

It’s a costly question for Seattle. More costly than initially expected.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Fair Use Notice This website may at times present copyrighted material, the use of which might not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. Such material is made available in an effort to advance understandings of democratic, economic, environmental, human rights, political, scientific, and social justice issues, among others. The author believes that this constitutes a fair use of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the U. S. Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the articles published on this website are distributed without profit for research and informational purposes. In most instances a link is placed to originator of Article and it is never expressly mentioned as written by, we use published by certain entities who write or publish for this said Blog..

Tell Us What's On Your Mind (0)




WP-SpamFree by Pole Position Marketing

REMEMBERING A LEGEND!

LATEST SEAHAWKS NEWS

dumb ass denver donkeys

Denver columnist blames coin flip for Broncos loss

The Denver Broncos defense showed improvement in their overtime loss to Seattle, but they were run over in ...
140922-wilson-lynch-round-660

Game at a glance: Seahawks 26, Broncos 20 OT

After surrendering a six-play, 80-yard drive that allowed the Broncos to tie the game at the end of ...
140921wilson660a

Overtime proved to be Russell Wilson time

After the Broncos rallied behind Peyton Manning to tie the score in regulation, Russell Wilson led the Seahawks ...
62KR2.AuSt.5

Hawk secondary has rare off day

Chargers receiver Kennan Allen leveled a shot at Seattle’s All-Pro cornerback Richard Sherman, contending “he’s just a normal ...
20140915mmm660

Philip Rivers’ performance puts Seahawks defense in redemption mode

Monday metatarsal musings: What Philip Rivers and Antonio Gates were able to do on Sunday just doesn’t happen ...
Z3pJa.AuSt.5

Seahawks’ defense can’t get off field, Seattle loses at San Diego, 30-21

The team bus is leaving Qualcomm Stadium. It only seems like the Seahawks’ defense is still on that ...
20140911harvin660

Unleashing Percy Harvin on the jet sweep

The jet sweep is nothing new, even with Percy Harvin running it as dynamically as he did in ...
1ffZ5G.AuSt.5

Pete Carroll meets with Seahawks about domestic violence

Real life is intersecting with the Seahawks and the rest of the NFL. As with everything else surrounding the ...

Shop for 2014 Seahawks Gameday Gear at NFLShop.com

Shop for 2014 Seahawks Gameday Gear at NFLShop.com
 

lat-noise-wre0011368363-20130915

WELCOME TO THE SEAHAWKS 12TH MAN ARMY.

WE TAKE PRIDE IN GIVING SEAHAWKS FANS AROUND THE CLOCK UPDATES,  ALL SEAHAWKS ALL THE TIME. SO IF YOU WANT THE LATEST SEAHAWKS NEWS DELIVERED FOR FREE RIGHT TO YOUR EMAIL BOX ONCE A WEEK, SIGN UP AND ENJOY!

WE HAVE BEEN PROUDLY SERVING DIEHARD SEAHAWKS FANS SINCE 2004.

Enter your Email

Preview | Powered by FeedBlitz