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View Full Version : Franchise/Transition Tags should be removed from the NFL altogether


eddie mac
02-20-2009, 04:12 PM
IMHO they should.

They restrict the individual player's right to move to where he wishes once his contract expires which in any other World Wide Team Sport or employment would never happen. To my knowledge Basketball, Baseball, Hockey or even Soccer stars cant be held to this ransom.

Also when's the last time you witnessed an NFL player proclaim joy at receiving the tag??? regardless of whether it pays that player the avg of the top 5 salaries at that position.

Dont NFL teams already have enough rights over their players with exclusive rights/restricted free agency and then a period of nearly 1 month after the playoffs end to negotiate extensions with players prior to even hitting unrestricted free agency.

Theoretically if Player A signs a 5 year deal after being drafted no other team can negotiate with said player until the end of the 5 years whilst the original team can renegotiate that deal at any time with said player.

Why should the likes of Terrell Suggs or Julius Peppers have to stay on their teams for god knows how many more seasons just because NFL teams have this right under league rules. Suggs or Peppers dont owe these teams anything. They played out their existing contracts. The teams in question never offered long-term deals to the value either player wanted so why should they have this restriction.

It just makes a total mockery of the title free-agency, because at the end of the day the majority of the best players never get to test the market.

Taco John
02-20-2009, 04:15 PM
I understand why teams want those tags. Those tags protect the franchises initial investment in the player - and it even protects the fans to a degree.

The Joker
02-20-2009, 04:19 PM
If nothing else, you shouldn't be allowed tag a guy two years in a row.

I can see a place for the tag, but it's too easy for a team to use these days. When you've got guys like Sproles, not even a starter, being tagged then you know there's something wrong with the system.

Maybe make the tag salary worth 150% of the highest paid player at that position in the league. That way it'd only make sense to use it on truly elite guys rather than people like Suggs, Atogwe and others, who while good players are hardly the face of the franchise.

Taco John
02-20-2009, 04:21 PM
If nothing else, you shouldn't be allowed tag a guy two years in a row.

I can see a place for the tag, but it's too easy for a team to use these days. When you've got guys like Sproles, not even a starter, being tagged then you know there's something wrong with the system.

Maybe make the tag salary worth 150% of the highest paid player at that position in the league. That way it'd only make sense to use it on truly elite guys rather than people like Suggs, Atogwe and others, who while good players are hardly the face of the franchise.

What about the Patriots and Cassell? There's no way that they could get the value out of him that they should if it weren't for the tag system.

I feel for the players, but the franchises have to have the ability to retain value. I don't like the system - but I don't like the alternative of just allowing these players to get loose. That would utterly kill the small market teams who would lose all of their top free agents.

STBumpkin
02-20-2009, 04:29 PM
You know, I sat for 10 minutes trying to come up with arguments for the franchise tag because that was my initial leaning. After that time I realized that there really is no reason for it. When you get a stud in the draft, if you can't turn your team around (assuming that is why he wants to leave) in the time frame of his 4-6 year rookie deal, you shouldn't be able to keep him where he doesn't want to be.

I do see both sides of the argument (mariad points for both sides) but I have to go with the players. Let them go where they want.

P.S. I'm not upset we didn't get a shot at peppers or any other player that wants to get overpaid. I just think this is an injustice for the player.

STBumpkin
02-20-2009, 04:35 PM
What about the Patriots and Cassell? There's no way that they could get the value out of him that they should if it weren't for the tag system.

I feel for the players, but the franchises have to have the ability to retain value. I don't like the system - but I don't like the alternative of just allowing these players to get loose. That would utterly kill the small market teams who would lose all of their top free agents.

I agree to an extent, but do you want to trap a player on an irrelevant team for longer than the 4-6 years of his rookie contract? 4-6 years is plenty of time to turn a team around, espescially in the equity inherent in the NFL today. How would you feel if you signed a 4 year contract as a rookie with the raiders, then they tagged you after they failed to improve at all during your tenure? There is no end to crappiness in sight, yet you are forced to remain with the team. Why not give the player a chance to play for a winner?

That One Guy
02-20-2009, 04:43 PM
It's a byproduct of where the NFL is at these days. No the player doesn't like it because they want the huge, upfront deals that folks are getting nowadays so they can quit. As we see more and more deals becoming increasingly guaranteed, players continue to sign monster deals and then flop. That's the only reason players have to complain about the tag, it makes them keep trying.

Once again, I have no sympathy ever for a guy making top 5 money in the NFL... things could be much worse in his life.

CoBear23
02-20-2009, 04:44 PM
IMHO they should.

They restrict the individual player's right to move to where he wishes once his contract expires which in any other World Wide Team Sport or employment would never happen. To my knowledge Basketball, Baseball, Hockey or even Soccer stars cant be held to this ransom.

Also when's the last time you witnessed an NFL player proclaim joy at receiving the tag??? regardless of whether it pays that player the avg of the top 5 salaries at that position.

Dont NFL teams already have enough rights over their players with exclusive rights/restricted free agency and then a period of nearly 1 month after the playoffs end to negotiate extensions with players prior to even hitting unrestricted free agency.

Theoretically if Player A signs a 5 year deal after being drafted no other team can negotiate with said player until the end of the 5 years whilst the original team can renegotiate that deal at any time with said player.

Why should the likes of Terrell Suggs or Julius Peppers have to stay on their teams for god knows how many more seasons just because NFL teams have this right under league rules. Suggs or Peppers dont owe these teams anything. They played out their existing contracts. The teams in question never offered long-term deals to the value either player wanted so why should they have this restriction.

It just makes a total mockery of the title free-agency, because at the end of the day the majority of the best players never get to test the market.

I believe that a team can only use the Franchise Tag on a player twice. But I do agree in principle that the Franchise Tag is a players worst nightmare, and the NFLPA most definitely agrees with you.


Even with over Half of NFL revenues, about 3.5 Billion going to it's roughly 2,000 players. The teams still hold almost all the trump cards when it comes to contracts and free-agency. You might sign a 5 year contract but as everyone knows there is nothing guaranteed about it.

The owners are in for a real fight during the next set of labor talks over the percentage of revenue that goes to the players, and things like the salary cap and franchise tags .

Broncos fans should be concerned about this. Once the salary cap is gone, it will never be back. It will be baseball all over again, teams in Major Markets will be able to bully and corner the free agent market each year.

Unlike other owners who have Billions in outside business' Bowlen's business is the Broncos and even with one of the largest fan-bases in the NFL, he simply will not be able to throw around the money that will be necessary to land the big FA's each year.

gyldenlove
02-20-2009, 05:27 PM
I agree the tag should be eliminated.

So many teams let a lot of their free agents come down to the wire and when they can't negotiate a contract extension in the month to 2 months between the end of the season and beginning of free agency they are forced to use the tag so they don't have to give market value contracts.

If a team wants to avoid losing a player then offer him a contract during the season like we did with DJ Williams, that is how most other sports do it. Especially in a league where you only play on Sundays and have a week off during the 4 months season, you have time to negotiate.

Kaylore
02-20-2009, 05:30 PM
What they need to do is lower the cap so it's a number that requires some prudence. The cap has ballooned so much each year that there is no longer a "free agency" period. Teams always have the ability to sign and keep their players. Lowering the cap would make the franchise tag have to be truly used for keeping a franchise player around, not a method to get compensation for something you're not going to get anyway.

I think it needs to stay in some measure because teams have a right protect themselves. The problem is the system overall is broken. The Cap should be based on projected league revenue each year.

That One Guy
02-20-2009, 08:25 PM
What they need to do is lower the cap so it's a number that requires some prudence. The cap has ballooned so much each year that there is no longer a "free agency" period. Teams always have the ability to sign and keep their players. Lowering the cap would make the franchise tag have to be truly used for keeping a franchise player around, not a method to get compensation for something you're not going to get anyway.

I think it needs to stay in some measure because teams have a right protect themselves. The problem is the system overall is broken. The Cap should be based on projected league revenue each year.

For that stance, wouldn't the transition tag fit perfectly?

Taco John
02-20-2009, 08:42 PM
I agree that the tag system isn't great... But you don't fix it by breaking the system further. Scrapping the tag system is only going to make the weak teams weaker, and the strong teams stronger. The weak teams will essentially serve as a farm system for the upper tier teams, and franchises like Detroit will eventually dry up.

There's a reason why the tag system is in place. It wasn't just to be mean.

rugbythug
02-20-2009, 09:53 PM
The tag offsets shorter contracts for low round picks. It is a a give and take. With no rules. Clubs could tell a 7th rounder here I am going to pay you a non guaranteed contract of 10 years 250K a year. Much better than he makes at subway. But if he hits not near what he would be worth. In exchange for shorter life contracts clubs get to keep some players via tags. In Reality think about it. 14 players were franchised tagged this year. 32X53 Makes it a fraction of the players in the NFL.

Kaylore
02-20-2009, 10:00 PM
For that stance, wouldn't the transition tag fit perfectly?

The transition tag doesn't work either because it allows for poison pills.

peacepipe
02-20-2009, 10:16 PM
I say eliminate it, When your contract is over it's over. If a team wants to get full value out of a player than sign him to a longer contract from the get go. Then you can trade if you want.

thumpc
02-21-2009, 01:38 AM
They could just lower the compensation to a 2nd round pick instead of two firsts, and allow the player loose as a free agent instead of trading the rights.

Drek
02-21-2009, 05:54 AM
Could just go the path of baseball and grade the FAs as following:
top 25% - Type A
Next 25% - Type B
Other 50% - Type C

Type A's in baseball require compensation from the signing team as well as a sandwich pick (much like the compensatory picks in the NFL).

Type B's just get sandwich picks.

Type C's get nothing.

Now in baseball a Type A sees the losing team get the signing team's 1st (as long as its not in the top 15) or their next highest pick if they've signed a higher rated FA, as well as a sandwich between rounds 1 and 2. Type B's just get a sandwich between rounds 1 and 2. Thats too much compensation by NFL standards.

Something like a team signing a single Type A has to give up their 2nd or 3rd (depending on if the second is a top 50 overall pick), but any additional type A signings will remove the protected status of their top 50 overall picks. So take this off-season for example. If Peppers was the #1 ranked player and Haynesworth was #2, and the Broncos sign Peppers? We owe the Panthers our 3rd (since our 2nd is in the top 50). If we sign Haynesworth though the Panthers get our 2nd and the Titans get our 3rd. Sign another Type A? The Panthers get our 1st, the Titans our 2nd, and the other team our 3rd.

All of those teams would also get a sandwich pick, I think the prime place for that would be end of the 3rd/beginning of the 4th.

This would also do away with compensatory picks. Of course to be elidgable for this compensation you would need to offer your player the NFL equivalent of contract arbitration. Basically not unlike the franchise tag but with altered compensation rules to make the system more fluid.

strafen
02-21-2009, 08:25 AM
You will be thankful to have a the tag system when other teams start looking at our good players; Clady, Marshall, Hillis, Cutler
Granted the Broncos have been good at signing/re-sgning their players when their contract is due, and hjave been notorious for doing a great job in keeping our star players intact...

gyldenlove
02-21-2009, 09:25 AM
I think the tag is all bad, it gives the teams an advantage over the player that you see in no other sports. An unrestricted free agent should be just that, unrestricted.

Take the Lions for instance, they have Hanson their kicker, they knew by the trade deadline that they were out of the playoffs and that Hanson would be a free agent, if they didn't have the franchise tag to use as leverage they could have traded Hanson to a team in the playoff hunt who could use a good kicker (and there are plenty of those) or they could have gone into to full resigning mode and tried to sign him to avoid losing him. Because they had the franchise tag they could just go along as the season went and the trade deadline passed and then resign him after the season with the provision that they would franchise tag him if they couldn't reach a deal.

Trades in the NFL almost never happens because there is no pressure on teams to trade a player, they know that they can just tag him and avoid losing him for nothing.

Several things has to happen in the new CBA, rookie wage scale, no franchise tags, reduction of the salary cap, impartial board to review and hand out suspensions for drugs and misconduct. Essentially I think the players have to give up some salary and a rookie wage scale in order to get a fair deal with suspensions and appeals and to remove the tags.

It would make the league better all around, teams wouldn't be hand cuffed because a high 1st round draft pick doesn't pan out, teams wouldn't be able to use the franchise tag to keep free agents off the market and force them to accept sub market value contracts, there would be written guidelines for misconduct and drug suspensions so you get the same punishment for the same crime and by lowering the salary cap you could reduce the ticket prices and get better attendance and avoid blackouts as well as making the small market teams more profitable and more competitive.

Hercules Rockefeller
02-21-2009, 09:30 AM
Yeah, it should totally be eliminated since it was unilaterally imposed by the League without the NFLPA ever agreeing to something like it in CBA negotiations.

I sucks, the players can't even complain to their union reps about it because the union had no ability to not agree to something like franchise and transition tags being in the CBA. No way would the tags have been a negotiated concession by the players to receive free agency in the first place!

Cito Pelon
02-21-2009, 12:21 PM
IMHO they should.

They restrict the individual player's right to move to where he wishes once his contract expires which in any other World Wide Team Sport or employment would never happen. To my knowledge Basketball, Baseball, Hockey or even Soccer stars cant be held to this ransom.

Also when's the last time you witnessed an NFL player proclaim joy at receiving the tag??? regardless of whether it pays that player the avg of the top 5 salaries at that position.

Dont NFL teams already have enough rights over their players with exclusive rights/restricted free agency and then a period of nearly 1 month after the playoffs end to negotiate extensions with players prior to even hitting unrestricted free agency.

Theoretically if Player A signs a 5 year deal after being drafted no other team can negotiate with said player until the end of the 5 years whilst the original team can renegotiate that deal at any time with said player.

Why should the likes of Terrell Suggs or Julius Peppers have to stay on their teams for god knows how many more seasons just because NFL teams have this right under league rules. Suggs or Peppers dont owe these teams anything. They played out their existing contracts. The teams in question never offered long-term deals to the value either player wanted so why should they have this restriction.

It just makes a total mockery of the title free-agency, because at the end of the day the majority of the best players never get to test the market.

That's gonna be one of the bargaining points in the next CBA.

ayjackson
02-21-2009, 01:02 PM
Don't feel sorry for the players, they negotiated the CBA. The tag provision was likely (I don't remember the specifics of the negotiations) a concession by the union in return for greater free agency. I mean some of these guys are UFA's by 25 - 26. You don't get that in other sports.

eddie mac
02-21-2009, 02:05 PM
Don't feel sorry for the players, they negotiated the CBA. The tag provision was likely (I don't remember the specifics of the negotiations) a concession by the union in return for greater free agency. I mean some of these guys are UFA's by 25 - 26. You don't get that in other sports.

In Worldwide soccer teams lose any rights to out of contract players at age 23. Prior to that age they'd be owed a so-called grooming fee for bringing that player through their youth system.

eddie mac
02-21-2009, 02:09 PM
Yeah, it should totally be eliminated since it was unilaterally imposed by the League without the NFLPA ever agreeing to something like it in CBA negotiations.

I sucks, the players can't even complain to their union reps about it because the union had no ability to not agree to something like franchise and transition tags being in the CBA. No way would the tags have been a negotiated concession by the players to receive free agency in the first place!

Gotta love Herc's sarcasm.

ayjackson
02-21-2009, 04:43 PM
In Worldwide soccer teams lose any rights to out of contract players at age 23. Prior to that age they'd be owed a so-called grooming fee for bringing that player through their youth system.

Bosman rule. I'm familiar with the system under the FA and UEFA, I just didn't think that would bear much weight around here.

My only point was that the Union likely decided it was okay to sacrifice a few players to "tags" every year so that the rest of the players could enjoy increased free agency.

Northman
02-22-2009, 07:17 AM
I understand why teams want those tags. Those tags protect the franchises initial investment in the player - and it even protects the fans to a degree.

Yep, hard to argue that. Without them teams that struggle year after year continue to struggle because players dont want to play there. Sucks for the player but unless that player/agent puts it in writing that he cant be franchised than thats how it goes.