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Inside The Bills

Steelers ready to tag Hampton

Posted by Chris Brown on February 23, 2010 – 1:08 pm

The Pittsburgh Steelers are reportedly working on a long term deal with free agent to be DT Casey Hampton, but if one can’t be reached they’re prepared to use the franchise tag.

That according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, as the Steelers have until Thursday to use the tag.

New England has already tagged Vince Wilfork. Others DTs expected to be tagged if a long term deal can’t be reached include Green Bay’s Ryan Pickett and San Fran’s Aubrayo Franklin.


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All top DTs to be tagged?

Posted by Chris Brown on February 19, 2010 – 4:50 pm

If long terms deals are not worked out for some potential free agent defensive tackles, it’s almost certain that they’ll be tagged with the franchise label prior to Feb. 25.

That’s the deadline for NFL clubs to make use of the franchise tag, and according to NFL.com’s Jason LaCanfora, four of the top six players most expect to get tagged sans a long term deal are DTs. With the franchise tag just a shade over $7M for DTs, it’s not surprising that NFL teams are willing to go that route to protect one of the more important parts of their defense.

The four defensive tackles expected to be franchised if no long term deal can be reached are New England’s Vince Wilfork, Pittsburgh’s Casey Hampton, San Fran’s Aubrayo Franklin and Green Bay’s Ryan Pickett.

Not surprisingly, all four play in 3-4 systems and those teams know that quality NTs don’t grow on trees. The other two players expected to be franchised are New Orleans S Darren Sharper and Oakland DL Richard Seymour.

The Bills are in need of a true nose tackle as they make the transition to the 3-4 defense, but it doesn’t appear that making a play for any of the above NTs will be an option.


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Tag time

Posted by Chris Brown on February 11, 2010 – 9:28 am

Thursday marks the first day that NFL teams can begin using the franchise or transition tag on players that are set to hit the free agent market.

Most believe that New England NT Vince Wilfork will be tagged with Pittsburgh NT Casey Hampton possibly getting a tag of some kind as well. For DTs the amount is just a shade over $7M, so it makes sense for the Patriots and Steelers knowing how hard it is to find two gap DTs for a 3-4 system.

It’s not anticipated that the Bills will make use of the franchise or transition tag on any of their prospective free agents. The deadline for clubs to use the franchise or transition tags is Feb. 25.


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