Several sources are confirming through twitter that the Vikings have decided to put the franchise tag on outside linebacker Chad Greenway, indicating of course that neither wide receiver Sidney Rice or defensive end Ray Edwards will get the distinguished designation.
Using the franchise tag is funny business for NFL teams right now considering the NFLPA says the designations has zero validity under the current CBA which is set to expire March 3rd. That of course mean that a team cannot designate a player as “franchise” without having a new CBA in place.
Jason LaCanfora reports that the Vikings will not use the transition tag at this point and are hopeful that they can reach a long term deal with Rice, but Edwards is likely to depart in free agency to another team, linked here. If that’s the case then are the Saints back in the market to retain Edwards services?
In free agency last year it was rumored that the Saints and Eagles were the front runners to sign Edwards, a restricted free agent designated with a first round tender, although neither signing every came to fruition and Edwards stayed with the Vikings.
During that period the Saints had released left defensive end Charles Grant after a second consecutive seasons where he tore his triceps muscle, he was also being paid rather heavily for pedestrian production.
The Chicago Bears released right defensive end Alex Brown close to the same time that the Saints parted ways with Grant, a few weeks late Brown was signed to take over left defensive end in the Saints defense.