What a terrific class of nose tackles it would have been without the franchise tag.
New England’s Vince Wilfork and San Francisco’s Aubrayo Franklin have already been collared, and Jason La Canfora of the NFL Network reports that Green Bay could use its franchise tag on Ryan Pickett.
Like everyone else, it will be used to help the sides carve out a longterm extension. Otherwise,, Pickett will play in 2010 for $7.003 million, the tag amount. The Pittsburgh Steelers are also expected to tag their nose tackle Casey Hampton.
One of the negotiating tools the teams have is the threat of a work stoppage in 2011. If the players play under the tag this year, it’s $7 million guaranteed. If there’s no football in 2011, that $7 million will have to be their income over two years. We’ll see if any of these players get big deals.
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