The NFL’s franchise tag window was open for the past 10 days, but it has now closed. Teams had until Tuesday, 4 p.m. ET to use the tag on one of their upcoming unrestricted free agents.
A total of eight teams pulled the trigger, not including the New England Patriots. They were not expected to tag Pro Bowl cornerback J.C. Jackson or any other member of their free agents class to begin with, and the last few hours did not change anything.
With that said, here is a full list of who was in fact tagged.
TE David Njoku, Cleveland Browns: The Browns were the first team to officially announce using the franchise tag this offseason. Keeping David Njoku in the fold makes sense for them, even after investing in Austin Hooper just two years ago: serving as co-TE1 alongside Hooper, Njoku led the team in touchdown catches last season (4) and ranked third in both receptions (36) and receiving yards (475).
S Jessie Bates III, Cincinnati Bengals: A starter ever since joining the Bengals in the second round of the 2018 draft, Bates played a key role in helping the team reach the Super Bowl last season. Primarily aligning as a deep safety in Cincinnati’s defense, he registered three interceptions in 2021 — including two in the playoff. He also had a crucial pass breakup in the AFC title game that led to an interception to set up the game-winning field goal.
OT Orlando Brown Jr., Kansas City Chiefs: One year after acquiring Brown via trade, the Chiefs are making sure to keep him in the fold for at least one more season. The 25-year-old started all 19 of the team’s games as the blindside protector of quarterback Patrick Mahomes, giving up six sacks and getting voted to his third straight Pro Bowl.
WR Chris Godwin, Tampa Bay Buccaneers: The Buccaneers will keep their star receiver in the fold for another season by using the tag in back-to-back offseasons. The two sides were actually working on a contract extension, but no agreement was reached before the closing of the franchise tag window.
TE Mike Gesicki, Miami Dolphins: Coming off a strong season that saw him catch 73 passes for 780 yards and a pair of touchdowns, Gesicki will stay put instead of entering free agency. The move makes sense for Miami: not only is Gesicki one of quarterback Tua Tagovailoa’s favorite targets, the team also has the financial means to make it work.
TE Dalton Schultz, Dallas Cowboys: Despite the Cowboys being in a dire salary cap situation, they have decided to retain their number one tight end via the franchise tag. Schultz is coming off a productive season that saw him catch 85 passes for a combined 897 yards and eight touchdowns — the best season of his four-year career.
OT Cam Robinson, Jacksonville Jaguars: After already placing the franchise tag on Robinson last offseason, the Jaguars used it again this year — for good reason. Protecting second-year quarterback Trevor Lawrence is paramount, and Jacksonville wants Robinson to keep playing a key role in this.
WR Davante Adams, Green Bay Packers: With Aaron Rodgers staying in Green Bay for the foreseeable future, the team made sure to keep his favorite pass catcher in town as well. Including the playoffs, Adams caught 132 passes last season for 1,643 yards and 11 touchdowns.