Why do the Bears have 4.5 months to sign Jaylon Johnson? The franchise tag deadline explained

Why do the Bears have 4.5 months to sign Jaylon Johnson? The franchise tag deadline explained originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago

The Bears placed a non-exclusive franchise tag on Jaylon Johnson on Tuesday, the team announced. Both parties have 4.5 months to find common ground on a deal.

What does that mean exactly?

The deadline for teams to place the franchise tag on players has passed. It was Tuesday, March 5 at 3 p.m. CT. But the deadline for both teams and players to find common ground on a long-term contract outside of the franchise tag is Monday, July 17 at 3 p.m. CT.

The Bears placed the franchise tag on Johnson, meaning he would play on a one-year, guaranteed deal worth $19.8 million if he signs it. But there's still time for Johnson to earn what he's aiming for, which is a long-term deal.

The Bears have from now until mid-July to find common ground on a long-term deal. If they can't, Johnson will either have to sign the franchise tag and play under the one-year deal, or hold out for a long-term deal.

MORE: Bears tagging Jaylon Johnson latest expected move in long negotiations that need to end

General manager Ryan Poles made it clear at the team's end-of-season press conference, and the NFL Combine, that he is steadfast in keeping Johnson. Johnson is here to stay in Chicago whether it's a long-term deal or the franchise tag.

"Jaylon’s not going to go anywhere and we’ll work through it to get something done," Poles said at the team's end-of-season press conference."

Poles even made his ongoing talks with Johnson’s camp seem cheery.

“We have really good communication. The big thing was just kind of take a break here after the season and then we’ll start talks again. I feel really good about that situation.”

Johnson is not only seeking a long-term deal, but he's looking to be one of the highest-paid, if not the highest-paid cornerback in the league.

"I think it really stands ... the ball's in my court, the ball's in my favor," Johnson said in January on "All Facts No Brakes with Keyshawn Johnson." "I think really it's just a matter of time and when it happens. I think really going into the negotiations I don't think there's too much to really try to talk about.

"I feel like there's no reason why I can't be the highest-paid corner in the league. That's what I'm aiming for. That's what I'm shooting for. That's what I think can be done and should be done."

Can the Bears and Johnson shake hands on a long-term deal? They have until July 17 to get that done.

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