The NFL’s offseason has a formula, a rhythm. This week’s backbeat comes from the opening of the window for applying the franchise or transition tags.
It’s an annual NFL fortnight (brought to you by Fortnite, possibly) that allows each team to apply one tag — franchise or transition — to a player who is due to become an unrestricted free agent. (The tags also can be used on restricted free agents.) The transition tag gives the current team a right to match an offer sheet signed with a new team. The non-exclusive version of the franchise tag carries both a right to match and two first-round picks, if the offer isn’t matched. The exclusive franchise tag takes the player off the market entirely.
Here’s a look at the potential options for each franchise, many of which as a practical matter have none. We’ll have specific blurbs applicable to specific teams and players in the coming days. Including one player who possibly will take a page from the Le’Veon Bell playbook in order to get to the open market, eventually.