HomeDa Birds NewsTop 5 Eagles to Watch as Franchise Tagging Starts, Including Saquon Barkley

Top 5 Eagles to Watch as Franchise Tagging Starts, Including Saquon Barkley

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PHILADELPHIA – The NFL’s offseason begins to pick up a bit of steam now with the ability of teams to franchise tag a player they don’t want to escape via free agency, willing to pay the player the average price of what the market dictates at his position or, at least, allow the parties a few more months to wrangle a new contract.

It’s not exactly a sprint out of the starting gate leading up to the league’s new year on March 13 and doesn’t have the same appeal as the legal tampering period, which begins 72 hours before March 13, but it’s a start.

The franchise tag period, which begins on Tuesday and runs through March 5, will dictate which players other teams have to bid on when the free agency period begins, should they so desire.

The Philadelphia Eagles don’t dabble in tagging their players and have nobody they would do that with over these next two weeks anyway.

Note: The franchise tag amount is either the average of the five highest-paid players at the position or a 120 percent increase over the player’s previous salary number, whichever is higher.

There are some players on other teams that the Eagles may have an interest in should they not get tagged.

L’Jarius Sneed

USA Today

Here are five:

L’Jarius Sneed, CB, Kansas City Chiefs. The two-time defending Super Bowl champions may have a dilemma on their hands. They need to pay DT Chris Jones and are already paying quarterback Patrick Mahomes ($58.6 million salary cap charge) and tight end Travis Kelce ($15.4M cap charge).

If the Chiefs sign Jones to a long-term deal, they could tag Sneed, who is the kind of playmaker the Eagles’ defense and new DC Vic Fangio could use.

Kevin Dotson, OG, L.A. Rams. Jason Kelce needs to let the Eagles know soon of his intentions to return or retire, and if he goes, the Eagles could be in the market for someone like Dotson. Even if Kelce returns, Dotson, who plays right guard, could make sense.

The last time the Eagles were players in the O-line market when free agency began was 2016 when they signed Brandon Brooks and Stefen Wisniewski, and 2017 when they thought Chance Warmack could help. They added Dennis Kelly last year during training camp but he didn’t stick.

Dotson, 27, had the best season of his career last year after being traded from the Pittsburgh Steelers to the Rams for a pair of Day 3 picks. Pro Football Focus graded him as the league’s second-best guard overall and the top run blocker. He had a grade of 85.2 and committed just two penalties last year.

Bryce Huff, edge, New York Jets. Huff finally came into his own last year, recording double-digits in sacks (10) after entering the league as an undrafted free agent from Memphis in 2020. Now, some may say why not just go ahead and re-structure Haason Reddick’s deal? Reddick is better but is also five years older than Huff.

Related: Eagles Contract Extensions: How Philly Can Re-Sign DeVonta, Dickerson

Frankie Luvu, linebacker, Carolina Panthers. The Panthers will likely tag defensive end Brian Burns if a deal can’t be worked, leaving Luvu to explore free agency, where the 27-year-old undrafted free agent from 2018 would be a welcome addition to an Eagles linebacker corps currently under reconstruction.

Saquon Barkley, running back, New York Giants. The Eagles typically don’t spend at this position, but maybe the idea of fresh ideas that the new coordinators are expected to deliver will trickle up to the front office and they will find a way to make a three-year deal work for a player who played his high school ball an hour outside of Philly, just turned 27 on Feb. 9, and is better than D’Andre Swift. New York tagged Barkley last year but isn’t expected to do so again.

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