It’s that time of the year in the NFL where teams can start to tag their franchise players and the Dallas Cowboys have a decision to make about who will be their designated franchise player. However, the Cowboys also have the right to not tag any player–and they just might take that route this season.
Dallas does have players they could tag, but only one player makes real sense and that is outside linebacker Anthony Spencer. The team franchised Spencer last year at $8.8 million and could designate him again this season, but the price has gone up to $10.6 million to do so. The Cowboys are currently over the cap by around $20 million, so even when they do get under the cap, it may not make fiscal sense to use the franchise tag on Spencer. It appears as though the Cowboys would rather sign him to a long term deal and avoid having to pay a bill of more than $10 million despite how good he was for them last season.
Aside from Spencer, there are no real candidates for the Cowboys to franchise. Their free agents aren’t names that will command top dollar in the free agent market, which means the team likely won’t spend good money to retain any of them by using the franchise tag. Some of the possible, but highly unlikely, names on that list include running back Felix Jones, center Phil Costa, tight end John Phillips and cornerback Mike Jenkins. For most of those players, their positions dictate a pricey franchise number and the Cowboys are not likely to use the tag on any one of these players.
It comes down to one name for the Dallas Cowboys when it comes to their franchise tag: Spencer. I don’t think the Dallas Cowboys will use the tag on Spencer or anyone else this season and they will try to work out a long term deal with him.
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