NFL Franchise Tag: NFC South Predictions

By Amanda Borges
Assistant Digital Editor

NFC South

Today is the deadline to place the franchise tag on NFL players. With this deadline, there are many predictions and implications of what could happen to teams in the NFC South.

Atlanta Falcons

Today the Falcons were keeping their eyes on Brian Orakpo, who was franchised by the Redskins earlier today.

According to the Washington Post, the Redskins were still deciding whether to keep Orakpo or let him hit the open market. That decision was made this afternoon.

Currently, the Falcons are projected to be around $18 million under the cap, which is $133 million. But, that number could be higher assuming cuts will be made and some player contracts will be extended.

New Orleans Saints

The Saints are expected to have more than 12 players become unrestricted free agents next week, including LB Jonathan Vilma.

Vilma once was one of the top defensive players in the NFL and he recently had surgery. But, he says he wants to keep playing.

Vilma was a part of the infamous bounty scandal in New Orleans and was suspended because of it, but that most likely won’t affect his reputation now.

Carolina Panthers

The Panthers have stayed on top of their game in terms of franchising players. According to reports, management is in talks with free safety Mike Mitchell and WR Ted Ginn Jr.

If Carolina doesn’t have enough money to re-sign Mitchell, there are plenty of teams interested in him. The question becomes whether he will return to strong safety or stay at free safety. It’s his move.

If the Panthers are in the market for an upgraded receiver, expect them to look into Sidney Rice, who was recently released from the Seahawks. Some say the Texans are interested, too.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Obviously the big news coming out of Tampa today is the brand new uniforms that people either absolutely hate or totally love. But the unis aren’t the only thing on the mind of Bucs’ players.

One big question buzzing around has been whether Tampa Bay can keep Darrelle Revis and still have room for free agents. According to ESPN, the Bucs can keep Revis and have the ability to get a few others.

Right now, the Bucs have a little $114 million for their cap, which is rumored to get better.

Tampa Bay won’t likely bombard the team will tons of free agents but Jared Allen and Charles Tillman are likely to be pursued. Aside from them, the Bucs have serious needs at DE and CB.

The deadline is approaching fast so it’s only a matter of minutes until questions are answered and teams will have decisions made.

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