Packers expected to use franchise tag on WR Davante Adams

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The Green Bay Packers are prepared to use the franchise tag to keep Davante Adams out of free agency this offseason. According to a new report from Ian Rapoport of NFL Network, the Packers are “expected” to use the tag as a means of working toward a new deal with the superstar pass-catcher.

Adams, a first-team All-Pro at receiver each of the last two seasons, has an expiring contract. He would become an unrestricted free agent at the start of the new league year in March without a new deal or the team using the franchise tag.

By giving Adams the franchise tag, both the team and the player would extend the timeframe for getting a new deal done. Or the team could trade Adams for immediate compensation instead of getting a compensatory pick in next year’s draft for losing him in free agency.

There is a substantial hurdle: the salary cap. The tag is expected to cost around $20 million for Adams, and the Packers are already over $45 million over the cap for the 2022 season. Using the tag would add a significant complication to the team getting under the cap before the start of the new league year.

It’s possible the Packers are using the threat of the tag as a way of bringing down Adams’ asking price on a new deal. The two sides were far off on price this past summer, given Adams’ desire to be the highest-paid receiver in football and the team’s unwillingness to acknowledge DeAndre Hopkins as the highest-paid by annual value.

Earlier this month, Adams said “we’ll cross that bridge when we get to it” when asked about the team using the tag.

Per Rapoport, the Packers want to “reload” in an attempt to keep as much of the team together as possible entering 2022.

The window for using the franchise tag opens for teams on Feb. 22 and closes on March 8. The new league year starts on March 16.

By early March, the Packers and the team’s fanbase should know the immediate futures of Adams and quarterback Aaron Rodgers, at least for the 2022 season.

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