NFL's Franchise and Transition Tag window ends today

Posted Mar 1, 2016 explains the Franchise/Transition designation and how it affects the Giants

The gears of the NFL offseason are officially turning.

Tuesday marks the end of a two-week period for clubs to designate franchise or transition players from their lists of pending free agents. Front offices have until 4 p.m. ET to do so before free agency opens on March 9, the day the 2016 league year officially begins.

Last season, six players were tagged, including Giants defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul, who received the franchise designation. The others were Chiefs linebacker Justin Houston, Broncos wide receiver Demaryius Thomas, Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant, Patriots kicker Stephen Gostkowski and Dolphins tight end Charles Clay (transition).

Since the system’s inception in 1993, the New York Giants have used the tags seven times: four franchise and three transition. They are:

  • OT Jumbo Elliott (franchise) in 1993

  • LB Carl Banks (transition) in 1993

  • TE Howard Cross (transition) in 1994

  • RB Rodney Hampton (transition) in 1996

  • RB Brandon Jacobs (franchise) in 2009

  • P Steve Weatherford (franchise) in 2012

  • DE Jason Pierre-Paul (franchise) in 2015

There are three different tags that clubs may use: exclusive, non-exclusive, and transition.

An “exclusive” franchise player – not free to sign with another club – is offered the greater of the average of the top five salaries at the player's position or the amount of the Required Tender for a “non-exclusive” franchise player, as explained below.

A “non-exclusive” franchise player must be offered a one-year contract of an amount no less than a figure calculated using the average of the top five salaries at the player’s position for the previous year (and other variables), or 120 percent of the player’s previous salary, whichever is greater.

A “transition tag” is a one-year tender offer to a player for an amount that is the average of the top 10 salaries at the position. It guarantees the original club the right of first refusal to match any offer the player may receive from another team.

>> Estimated 2016 franchise tag figures (from

Position: Franchise figure (Transition figure)

  • Quarterback: $19.6 million ($17.5 million)

  • Defensive end: $15.4 million ($12.5 million)

  • Wide Receiver: $14.4 million ($12.0 million)

  • Linebacker: $14.0 million ($11.7 million)

  • Cornerback: $13.7 million ($11.7 million)

  • Offensive line: $13.5 million ($11.7 million)

  • Defensive tackle: $13.4 million ($10.7 million)

  • Running back: $11.5 million ($9.5 million)

  • Safety: $10.6 million ($9.0 million)

  • Tight End: $9.0 million ($7.6 million)

  • Kicker/Punter: $4.5 million ($4.0 million)

Here is a look at the Giants’ upcoming unrestricted free agents:

Unrestricted Free Agents

WR Rueben Randle

WR Hakeem Nicks

TE Daniel Fells

OL Brandon Mosley

OL Dallas Reynolds

DE Jason Pierre-Paul

DE Robert Ayers

DE George Selvie

DT Cullen Jenkins

DT Markus Kuhn

DT Barry Cofield

LB Jasper Brinkley

CB Prince Amukamara

CB Trumaine McBride

CB Jayron Hosley

S Craig Dahl

S Brandon Meriweather

K Josh Brown

LS Danny Aiken