The Oakland Raiders, along with the rest of the NFL, can begin using their franchise tags today. For those unfamiliar, the franchise tag is essentially a tool that teams can use to extend a player’s contract by one year unilaterally. It is often used when there has been an impasse in contract negotiations. It enables the two sides to continue negotiating for another year while either limiting or out right eliminating the ability of the player to sign with another team.
But the thing about the franchise tag is that it’s very expensive. It is normally only used for guys who are considered to be elite talent, because under the tag, they will be paid like elite talent. Because it is for only one year, teams do use the tag on lesser talents on occasion but it is not very common. For more information on how the tag works in the NFL, check out this great piece breaking it down.
For the Raiders, two guys could get the franchise tag, left tackle Jared Veldheer and defensive end Lamarr Houston. If tagged, Houston would cost the Raiders somewhere in the range of $11-12 million while Houston would cost somewhere in the range of $12-13 million. Either one would be a BIG price tag, but given the Raiders cap space and needs all over the roster, it would not be surprising to see one of these guys get the tag this off season.