Franchise Tag Meaning

Learn about the franchise tag in the NFL, how it works, its benefits, and examples like Dak Prescott. Understand the statistics behind franchise tags and their impact on teams and players.

What is a Franchise Tag?

The franchise tag is a designation used in the NFL to restrict a player’s ability to become a free agent. It allows teams to retain a player for another season by offering them a one-year contract.

How Does it Work?

Teams can apply the franchise tag to one player per year. The tag binds the player to the team by guaranteeing them a salary based on the top five salaries at their position or a percentage of the salary cap, whichever is higher.

Benefits of Using the Franchise Tag

  • Retain top talent
  • Avoid bidding wars in free agency
  • Buy time to negotiate a long-term contract

Case Study: Dak Prescott

The Dallas Cowboys used the franchise tag on quarterback Dak Prescott in 2020. This allowed them to keep him on the team while they negotiated a long-term contract. Prescott eventually signed a four-year deal worth $160 million.

Statistics on Franchise Tags

Since the introduction of the franchise tag in 1993, it has been used over 500 times. The most common positions tagged are defensive end, cornerback, and wide receiver.


The franchise tag is a valuable tool for NFL teams to retain key players and maintain competitiveness. While it may not always lead to long-term contracts, it provides stability and security for both the team and the player.

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