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NFL franchise tag window ends without the Eagles using it

Philadelphia Eagles v Houston Texans Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images

The NFL franchise tag window is now officially closed following the 4:00 PM Eastern deadline on Tuesday, March 7.

The Philadelphia Eagles did not end up using the tag.

This much was to be expected. Multiple Eagles beat reporters (including Zach Berman and Jeff McLane) had indicated that the team using the tag was very unlikely.

That said, there was one report out there that the Eagles would look to tag C.J. Gardner-Johnson if they weren’t able to get a long-term extension done with him. It’s possible that CJGJ and the Eagles can still find agreeable terms. But one would think he’ll be looking to at least test the market at this point.

The NFL’s negotiating window opens this coming Monday, March 13. Then contracts can be officially finalized when the new league year begins at 4:00 PM Eastern on Wednesday, March 15.

The expectation — as set by general manager Howie Roseman — is that the Eagles are going to lose a number of key players. The Birds simply cannot retain them all.

The likes of CJGJ, Javon Hargrave, James Bradberry, Isaac Seumalo, etc. could all be gone. Maybe the Eagles are able to keep one of them. Maybe not.

We’ll see for certain next week.

In other tag news, some thoughts to share:

  • Lamar Jackson getting hit with the non-exclusive tag means his time in Baltimore is up, in my opinion. I see the Ravens either letting him walk or agreeing to trade him. The Eagles would obviously prefer Jackson to not join the NFC. The early word is that the Atlanta Falcons are not interested.
  • The Dallas Cowboys did not optimize their options by tagging Tony Pollard, the way I see it. They could have let him test the market — one that is relatively loaded quality running backs (not to mention good options in the NFL Draft — and brought him back on a more reasonable number than paying him over $10 million this year. But at least they didn’t commit multi-year extension money to him.
  • The New York Giants avoided tagging Daniel Jones, instead signing him to a long-term extension. It’s reportedly a four-year contract worth $160 million “with $35 million more in upside.” Many will laugh at Jones getting top eight QB money ($40 million average) but there are no real bargains when it comes to extensions at this position. By avoiding tagging Jones, the Giants were able to tag Saquon Barkley instead. That’s the right approach to take with him as opposed to signing the running back to an extension. Of course, there’s talk that Saquon’s tag might just be a placeholder for a bigger deal. Mistake!

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