The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have informed WR Chris Godwin that he will be the recipient of the franchise tag, per Adam Schefter. Godwin is officially set to earn $15.99 million playing under the franchise tag in 2021 with the league’s official salary cap set at $182.5 million.
Godwin had a breakout year with the Bucs in 2019, earning himself a selection to the 2019 Pro Bowl after an 86/1,333/9 line posted over 14 games. Godwin’s entering his fifth year in the NFL and will look to bounce back following an injury-riddled 2020 season.
The Bucs utilizing the franchise tag on Godwin will mean that they’ll need to make some more tough decisions regarding the long list of impending free agents. Other players set to become free agents in 2021 include LBs Shaquil Barrett and Lavonte David, DT Ndamukong Suh, TE Rob Gronkowski, WR Antonio Brown and RB Leonard Fournette, all of whom played an integral role in their trip to Super Bowl LV.
NFL teams were able to start tagging players starting on Tuesday, February 23rd with a deadline of March 9th. Teams can still sign a tagged player to a longterm deal up until July 15th. Players would rather get long-term deals instead of a single-season franchise tag that gives them a one-year contract, but they do get a reasonable sum. Unfortunately, that payday doesn’t come with much long-term security.
This season the salary cap will take a hit due to COVID-19 and lost revenue. The franchise tag money won’t grow as usual, but it will still top out with quarterbacks getting around $24.8 million, defensive ends would come in next at $15.8 million, then all the way down to $9.5 million for tight ends and $4.4 million of kickers and punters.