With the franchise tag deadline date looming there is plenty of speculation regarding who / if any falcons player will receive the tag over the next week. The story that is building the most momentum at the moment is the belief that Falcons CB Brent Grimes will be slapped with the franchise tag by the front office.
In my analysis of the Falcons franchise tag situation (that was done a week or so ago) I said there was about a 60% chance that Grimes would receive the tag and in reality was the only Falcons player worthy of being given it.
This move makes a lot of sense to me. Brent Grimes has been a standout performer for the Falcons in recent years and is clearly the Falcons best corner on the current roster. To let a player of his calibre walk for nothing would be a frankly foolish tactic.
Despite his high standard of play recently there are still concerns from the Falcons front office, that giving him a long term deal would be the wrong thing to do. Grimes is 28 years old and would likely demand a 4 or 5 year deal at roughly $8 million a year. Handing out those kinds of dollars on a player, who being honest is a bit small and there are questions over whether his body can take the physical beating of the NFL over the long term. Grimes missed time down the stretch last year and his absence in the Saints game and Giants game was clearly obvious as our corner depth struggled to match up with their high flying offenses.
I can understand the Falcons being cautious with this move. There is little point paying a player over multiple years and him simply not being able to play due to injury. There are also concerns by some about how he would fit into Mike Nolan’s new defensive scheme, and whether or not he would be the best option for the Falcons given the scheme asks for different things from the cornerback than it did in BVG’s scheme.
Assigning the franchise tag to Grimes this offseason, effectively buys the falcons more time and gives them more information from his 2012 play, to make a more informed decision next off-season on Grimes’ long term future. It also gives the Falcons an opportunity to trade him for draft picks, if they decide he is not in their long term future.
A one off cost of $10.6 million is what it would take to franchise Grimes, which is a hell of a lot, but worth it in my opinion to protect one of our more important assets.
What do you guys think? Is this move on the cards? Stick your thoughts in the comments box below.