NFL Analyst Adam Schefter reports that even if the Falcons wanted to place the franchise tag on defensive Patrick Kerney, they could not. Kerney’s contract does not officially void until February 23, with the deadline for tagging players on February 22.
The last two years of Kerney’s seven-year contract that he signed in 2002 voided due to him meeting performance levels. Kerney will become an unrestricted free agent on March 2.
Three other defensive ends have already received the tag, including Dwight Freeney (Indianapolis Colts), Justin Smith (Cincinnati Bengals), and Charles Grant (New Orleans Saints). Kerney would have been the most expensive out of the group, since his tender would have been $10.6 million instead of the regular $8.644 million tender. That is because, Kerney’s franchise tender would have amounted to be 120% of his 2006 salary which was higher than the franchise tender.