Did the Ravens Use Their Franchise Tag?


Feb 3, 2013; New Orleans, LA, USA; Baltimore Ravens safety Ed Reed (20) during the blackout delay against the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl XLVII at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

The Tag Deadline has come and gone and the Ravens have not used theirs for the first time in years(since at least 2008 when they tagged Suggs the first time). There was some speculation that they might tag Reed, Ellerbe or Kruger after the joe Flacco deal got done, but in the end they did not. That means that the Ravens now have 8 days until March 12(the opening of free agency) to get any of those players re-signed. Starting tomorrow all of those players and their agents are free to speak with other teams, though no deal can be finalized until midnight on the 12th.

The Ravens didnt use their tag, but a few teams did.

The Chiefs were able to work out a new deal with Dwayne Bowe minutes before the tag deadline and that allowed them to tag LT Brandon Albert. This was a huge boon for the Cheifs who were widely expected to lose both of those players.

The Colts tagged Punter Pat McAfee, this isnt a huge move, but McAfee is one of the better punters in the league so it is good they were able to retain him.

The Cowboys tagged Anthony Spencer for the second consecutive year. This is probably the most interesting tag situation in the league. The Cowboys were penalized 11 million in cap space for making shady deals during the uncapped year, and now Spencers tag puts them right up against the cap. That give QB Tony Romo a ton of leverage to negotiate a new deal thanks to his 17 million cap hit. You have to think the Cowboys would love to lower that cap number by about 10 million to have some room in free agency. It wouldnt be surprising to see Romo get a new deal very soon.

The Broncos tagged LT Ryan Clady. this wasnt a surprise at all, the Broncos need to get him signed long term and werent able to hammer out a deal in time, that said Clady is likely to be a bronco for a long time, he is a top 2 or 3 LT in the league.

The Bears tagged DE Henry Melton. He is one of the more under-rated lineman in the league and he will likely get a fairly large deal in the future but like Clady, the Bears werent able to get the deal done in time.

The Dolphins were the last team to use the tag, they tagged defensive lineman Randy Starks. They elected to tag starks over Jake Long, Sean Smith or Reggie bush. Starks has been a lynchpin of their defense for a few seasons now and is well deserving of a new deal.