Tags: Buffalo, Buffalo Bills, Football, NFL
The two-week franchise tag period has started in the NFL, and the Buffalo Bills have a couple big decisions before them on whether and how to use theirs.
Top-tier players set to hit free agency include safety Jairus Byrd and offensive guard Andy Levitre. In Byrd's case, the Associated Press reported he was to begin talks with the team this week at the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis.
The two-time Pro Bowler just played out a four-year, $4.15 million deal. He figures, though, to command more than that per season starting in 2013. If the Bills were to apply their franchise tag on him, the one-year deal would have to be worth between $5.89 and $6.79 million. Veteran defensers S George Wilson, LB Nick Barnett and CB Terrence McGee were released last week, presumably in an attempt to free up salary cap space to sign players like Byrd.
Levitre would also command around $6 million should be be franchised. The four-year deal he played out in 2012 paid him a total of $3.56 million.
The franchise option is available until March 4. Last year, 21 teams used the franchise tag. The Bills were not one of them.