Apologies to Smokey Robinson, but my mama told me, you better shop around…
Busy 24 hours. The 32 teams of the National Football League have until this coming Monday to designate their franchise players. Under the new CBA, an exclusive-rights franchised player will be signed for one year at a number far below previous seasons’ numbers. It used to be the player would receive the average of the top five paid players at the position. Now, there is a formula based on the salary cap and the franchise amounts of the past five years.
Non-exclusive rights franchised players are free to negotiate with other teams, but their original teams can match the offer or receive two first-round selections. Teams that designate a player are still free to negotiate a long-term deal with them, and then rescind the tag and apply it to another free agent.
Confusing enough? Maybe not to Chris Carr, Ravens nickelback who was just released to conserve cap space and who is a soon-to-graduate law student. I remember JB was pretty high on this guy a year ago…now the defensive back (who was due to earn $3.25 million) is a free agent. In the months before Nnamdi and DRC were signed by the Eagles in 2011, Carr would have been on the Eagles’ radar. But in this new year, Carr is just another mannequin in a show window the Eagles will pass by…
Chris Carr (#25)… CB, 5-10, 182, 8th year out of Boise State… a solid, smart DB and special teams guy who has exceeded his salary cap value at $3.25 million… Not that long ago, he would have been a nice fit for the Eagles… But at his current price, the Eagles will probably look away…unless they decide to part ways with Asante Samuel.
And there’s the rub. Carr could still be in the Eagles’ Free Agent signing picture if Asante Samuel is either traded or released… and Carr could still be in the Ravens’ picture in a restructured contract compromise.
That’s the crazy thing about this time of year in a non-litigative offseason shared by ownership and the players’ union…You don’t really know who’s signing on as a free agent with another team until the old team that released the player in question is done negotiating with him…
All that said, here is a breakfast menu of recent releases and franchise tag guys who are technically still in play for the Eagles:
|K Phil Dawson||Browns||Tagged||Back-to-back tags for your kicker, and you wonder why you pick top 10 every year?|
|K Mike Nugent||Bengals||Tagged||Apparently will free up S Reggie Nelson to hit the open market…|
|S Dashon Goldson||49ers||Tagged||Might send early 3rd rounder in ’08 Reggie Smith packing. Could be possible Elam replacement…|
|DE Calais Campbell||Cardinals||Tagged||Fully expected, but man, he would have been a great addition to the D-line.|
|WR Lee Evans||Ravens||Released||Yawn…|
|RB Ray Rice||Ravens||Tagged||One of the only top-flight runners on a winning team (hint, hint, hint)…|
|TE Fred Davis||Redskins||Tagged||One zone of kush away from being gone for a year. Have fun Redskins.|
|WR Mike Wallace||Steelers||Not Tagged||RFA – would net PITT a 1st rounder this year w/o a trade made…|
|WR DeSean Jackson||Eagles||Tagged||According to Mike Lombardi, Eagles might settle for a third rounder for him…|
|RB Marshawn Lynch||Seahawks||Not Tagged YET||Expected by Monday if no long term deal met…|
|DE Aaron Smith||Steelers||Released||Barely played last few years. Last stellar year was 2008…|
|CB Brent Grimes||Falcons||Tagged||Expected as well, top corner on the market, will probably hold out until season.|
|CB Cortland Finnegan||Titans||Not Tagged||And won’t be tagged, according to Schefter and local writers…|
|LB James Farrior||Steelers||Released||37 years old. Hmmmmmm….|
|DE Cliff Avril||Lions||Tag Coming||This could possibly put Stephen Tulloch on the market…|
|SS Tyvon Branch||Raiders||Tagged||Safety market morphs, as now we expect Michael Huff to be released…|
|CB Chris Carr||Ravens||Released||Dropped down the Baltimore depth chart last year, depth consideration = like a Frank Walker|
|RB Matt Forte||Bears||Tagged||JUST TAGGED|
Obviously, more players will hit the list over the weekend, and then we’ll be down to a week before teams can actually sign new players. It’s coming people… it’s coming.