What does it mean for an NFL player to be franchise tagged? Deadline, candidates, and more

With Super Bowl 58 over with, NFL fans everywhere have started turning their attention to next season. However, before teams can start signing free agents, before teams start bringing in prospects for interviews and evaluations, before those prospects even take the field for the combine, there is the franchise tag period.

A common practice in the NFL, many fans are still not quite sure what the franchise tag is, who it can be used on, and that there are different types of franchise tags to use. Here is a quick breakdown of what the franchise tag means and who could get one this upcoming season.

What is a franchise tag?

Created in 1993, a franchise tag is a tool that NFL teams can use on one of their impending free agents every year. Any player who signs a franchise tag agreement receives a one-year contract with their team at a set rate for the next season.

If you are asking yourself why a team wouldn’t do this for a player every year and never have to worry about signing them to a long-term deal, there are a few issues. For one, the current NFL CBA only allows a player to be franchise tagged three times. Also, each subsequent time a player is franchise tagged, they become more expensive. Oftentimes, an extension is better for the team money-wise.

Read the full USA Today article here.