Cleveland Browns only need a few hours to match offer sheet to center Alex Mack

Frank Schwab
April 11, 2014
Browns' Mack looking forward with business over
FILE - This Dec. 1, 2013 file photo shows Cleveland Browns center Alex Mack (55) in action during an NFL football game against the Jacksonville Jaguars, in Cleveland. Browns Pro Bowl center Alex Mack's football future could be decided in the next few days _ or hours. The Jacksonville Jaguars are expected to sign Mack to a contract offer sheet on Friday, April 11, 2014. Once the paperwork is filed, the Browns will have five days to match. Cleveland secured that right after placing a $10 million transition tag on Mack before free agency opened. (AP Photo/David Richard, File)

The Cleveland Browns didn't want to send any mixed messages to center Alex Mack.

Mack, who was transition tagged by the Browns before free agency, signed a five-year, $42 million offer sheet with the Jaguars, making him the highest paid center on a per-year basis in the NFL. The Browns had the right to match and had five days to do so. It took them a few hours.

The Browns announced that they had matched the offer sheet to Mack.

That came shortly after Jacksonville officially executed the offer sheet to Mack on Friday.

While the Browns probably ended up paying more than they wanted, they retained Mack, and that was the point of putting the transition tag on him.

The Browns have a new coaching staff and some good pieces in place on the roster, and two first-round picks to add to the talent. The offseason has been quite the bumpy ride at times, but at least Cleveland didn't lose one of the best centers in the league.

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Frank Schwab is the editor of Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at shutdowncorner@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!