The window for NFL teams to tag players with Franchise or Transition designations begins Tuesday:
View photos of Giants who have been tagged in the past.
Tuesday marks the beginning 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 on March 6 to do so before free agency opens on March 14, the day the 2018 league year officially begins.
Last season, seven players were given the franchise tag, including Giants defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul. He received the designation for the second time in three years and later signed a four-year contract to remain with the team.
The others around the league were Cardinals linebacker Chandler Jones, Panthers defensive tackle Kawann Short, Chargers linebacker Melvin Ingram, Rams cornerback Trumaine Johnson, Steelers running back Le'Veon Bell (exclusive) and Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins (exclusive).
Since the system's inception in 1993, the New York Giants have used the tags eight times – five franchise and three transition – on seven players.
• 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 and 2017
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.
Here are other important dates coming up on the NFL calendar:
Feb. 27-March 5: NFL Scouting Combine (Indianapolis)
March 6: Prior to 4 p.m. ET, deadline for clubs to designate Franchise or Transition Players
March 12-14: During the period beginning at noon on March 12 and ending at 3:59:59 p.m. on March 14, clubs are permitted to contact, and enter into contract negotiations with the certified agents of players who will become Unrestricted Free Agents upon the expiration of their 2017 player contracts at 4 p.m. on March 14. However, a contract cannot be executed with a new club until 4 p.m. on March 14.
March 14: The 2018 league year and free agency period begin at 4 p.m.
March 25-28: Annual League Meeting (Orlando)
April 2: Clubs that hired a new head coach after the end of the 2017 regular season may begin offseason workout programs.
April 26-28: 2018 NFL Draft (Arlington, Texas)