Buffalo Bills wide receiver Stevie Johnson may not receive a franchise tag after all, according to a report on Sunday evening. While the Bills and Johnson have been working on a long-term deal, the two sides had been far apart in negotiation, leading to speculation that the team may use its franchise tag on the wide receiver. However, a deal appears to be coming together, allowing the Bills to use their tag elsewhere if everything works out as planned.
The report comes from Adam Schefter.
Buffalo Bills and WR Stevie Johnson are on the verge of a five-year contract that is likely to be completed in the next 24 hours.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 5, 2012
Johnson is in line for a significant pay raise after stringing together productive seasons in the Bills offense. If the Bills do opt to use the franchise tag on him, which seems unlikely at this point, it would cost the team somewhere in the neighborhood of $9.5 million.