In 2010, WR Vincent Jackson was one of the players who would have normally been a free agent if not for the NFL's rules in an uncapped season which pushes the threshold for restricted free agency from four to six years. He wasn't happy when the San Diego Chargers placed a restricted free agent tender on him and showed his feelings by sitting out more than half the season in protest of the tender.
The latest news may not make Jackson thrilled either. The Chargers announced Jackson has been given the franchise tag. GM A.J. Smith said in the release:
"Vincent has been a valuable contributor to our team. We want him to be a Charger."
One important note is that this is the non-exclusive franchise tag meaning Jackson (or his agent) can talk to other teams.
The franchise tag number for receivers in 2011 is expected to be in the neighborhood of $9.5 million. It's unclear if the Chargers have any plans to attempt to work out a long-term deal with Jackson.
The NFL has told teams it can use the franchise tag from February 10-24 and Jackson becomes the fourth player to receive the tag after New England Patriots OL Logan Mankins, Philadelphia Eagles QB Michael Vick and New York Jets LB David Harris. The NFLPA says the franchise tag is meaningless without a new CBA in place so how it all works out remains to be seen.
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