Five NFL players have been given the franchise tag, with only Steelers running back Le’Veon Bell getting the exclusive tag.
Bell, who has been adamant about not playing under the tag for a second straight season, can’t negotiate with any other teams. Pittsburgh must offer the former Michigan State standout the average of the top five running backs’ salaries. Both sides plan to continue negotiating.
“Pittsburgh: the city that took in a 21-year old kid from small-town Ohio, the city I battled thru adversity in, the city that I became a man in,” Bell tweeted. “I love everything about being a Pittsburgh Steeler, and I want nothing more than to finish the rest of my career in Pitt!”
Also getting franchise tags were Miami wide receiver Jarvis Landry, Detroit defensive end Ezekiel Ansah, Dallas DE DeMarcus Lawrence, and Los Angeles Rams safety Lamarcus Joyner. They can talk with other teams, but their current team would get compensation if they leave.
The only player given the transition tag was Chicago cornerback Kyle Fuller.
Free agency begins March 14.
The franchise tag value for running backs is $11.866 million. But Bell is scheduled to make $14.54 million in 2018 because it is his second straight tag.
For defensive ends, it is $17.143 million, while it’s $15.982 million for receivers and $11.287 million for safeties.
Fuller’s transition amount is $9.536 million.
Last year’s franchise tags went to Bell and Washington QB Kirk Cousins (Michigan State), both exclusive, and to Arizona linebacker Chandler Jones, Carolina defensive tackle Kawann Short, Chargers LB Melvin Ingram, Rams CB Trumaine Johnson and Giants DE Jason Pierre-Paul.
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