QB franchise tag set at $19.95 million

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Posted: Feb 29, 2016 3:19 PM
QB franchise tag set at $19.95 million

NEW YORK (AP) — If the Washington Redskins decide to place the franchise tag on quarterback Kirk Cousins, it will cost them $19.95 million for 2016 under the values agreed upon by the NFL and the players' union.

Cousins is one of the more high-profile players whose contracts have expired, and quarterbacks carry the biggest tag numbers.

The franchise designation is worth the average of the top five salaries at a player's position or 120 percent of the value of his 2015 salary, whichever is higher. Teams secure the rights to continue negotiations with that player even as the league's free agency period begins, which this year is March 9.

Teams have until Tuesday to use the franchise or transition tag on a scheduled free agent. The salary cap for next season is $155.27 million, an increase of about $12 million per team from 2015.

The next most expensive position for a franchise tag is defensive end at $15.7 million, according to numbers made official Monday. Wide receivers would cost just under $14.6 million, followed by linebackers ($14.1 million), cornerbacks (just under $14 million) and offensive linemen ($13.7 million).

Defensive tackles ($13.6 million), running backs ($11.78 million), safeties ($10.8 million), tight ends ($9.1 million) and punters/kickers ($4.57 million) follow.

The Jets will be placing the franchise tag on DE Muhammad Wilkerson, a person familiar with the decision told The Associated Press on Monday. Baltimore has tagged kicker Justin Tucker and Chicago tagged wide receiver Alshon Jeffery.

Another top player whose contract is up and is likely to get franchise tagged is linebacker Von Miller, the Super Bowl MVP for Denver.

Transition tag numbers call for quarterbacks to receive $17.696 million, followed by defensive ends at $12.734 million.

A transition tag allows the player to negotiate with other teams, but his current club has the right of first refusal to match any offer.

Other transition tags: wide receiver, $12,268 million; linebacker, $11.925 million; cornerback, $11.913 million; offensive linemen, $11.902 million; defensive tackle, $10.875 million; running back, $9.647 million; safety,$9.116 million; tight end,$7.713 million; and punter/kicker. $4.123 million.

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AP Sports Writer Dennis Waszak Jr., contributed to this story.

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