The deadline for NFL teams to apply franchise tags is Feb. 24, and for the first time in 10 years, the Seahawks are not expected to use either a franchise or transition tag.
Kicker Olindo Mare was designated as the team’s franchise player last year, and signed a one-year offer worth the average of the five highest-paid punters and kickers in the league. Mare was the most likely consideratio n to receive the tag this year, but it appears the Seahawks will not elect to put the tag on him a second consecutive year, which would have required an offer of 120-percent of last year’s salary.
Defensive tackle Brandon Mebane is also at the end of his contract, and could have been a consideration. However, the price for defensive tackles is expected to spike, going above $12 million for a one-year offer.
Here’s a 10-year synopsis of how the Seahawks have used the franchise and transition tags:
2010 Player Designation Price tag
K Olindo Mare Franchise tag $2,814,000
Result: Mare signed his one-year tender and played the season, converting 25 of his 30 field-goal attempts. In three years with Seattle, he has missed a total of 10 attempts.
2009 Player Designation Price tag
LB Leroy Hill Franchise tag $8,304,000
Result: Hill did not sign the one-year tender, and after drafting Aaron Curry in April, the Seahawks removed the franchise tag, making Hill an unrestricted free agent. Hill subsequently re-signed with Seattle.
2008 Player Designation Price tag
CB Marcus Trufant Franchise tag $9,465,000
Result: Trufant signed a long-term contract in the months following his designation.
2007 Player Designation Price tag
K Josh Brown Franchise tag $2,078,000
Result: Brown signed one-year tender, became a free agent in 2008 and signed with St. Louis.
2006 Player Designation Price tag
LG Steve Hutchinson Transition tag $6,390,000
Result: Rumor has it this didn’t work out so well for Seattle, who took it in the shorts courtesy of the poison-pilled offer sheet Hutchinson signed with Minnesota.
2005 Player Designation Price tag
RB Shaun Alexander Franchise tag $8,080,000
Result: Seattle promised Alexander it wouldn’t apply the franchise tag again, then watched him run to the league’s MVP award and a fat new contract.
2004 Player Designation Price tag
LT Walter Jones Franchise tag $7,080,000
Result: Jones missed training camp and then played under the one-year tender for the third consecutive season.
2003 Player Designation Price tag
LT Walter Jones Franchise tag $5,734,000
Result: Reported after sitting out training camp for the second consecutive season.
2002 Player Designation Price tag
LT Walter Jones Franchise tag $4,920,000
Result: Missed training camp and the first two games before reporting and playing the rest of the season.
2000 Player Designation Price tag
WR Joey Galloway Franchise tag $4,100,000
Result: Traded to Dallas for two first-round choices after being designated Seattle’s franchise player. Galloway sat out eight regular-season games in 1999, holding out for a new contract. He was ruled a free agent for 2000 in an arbitration hearing.