With free agency looming, the Cleveland Browns franchise tag tight end, David Njoku to keep him from testing the open market.
The Cleveland Browns had two main targets to retain for the 2022 season in David Njoku and Jadeveon Clowney. It was announced on Monday morning that general manager Andrew Berry utilized the franchise tag on the star tight end and solved one of the team’s problems.
Cleveland last used the franchise tag in 2011 for placekicker, Phil Dawson, and now use it for Njoku which will cost the team $10.8 million in 2022.
I would have loved a two-year agreement, but in terms of money, this is great. The Browns were likely going to pay more than that to keep him here for multiple years, and this move doesn’t mean they still can’t lock him up long term. It just means they no longer feel pressure to get anything done right now.
What tag means for remaining Cleveland Browns tight ends
What does this mean for others?
Well, Austin Hooper is likely out. I don’t see the organization spending that much on the position, plus Harrison Bryant is a guy who Berry drafted and seems to have some upside.
One thing that wouldn’t shock me, is for the Browns to take a tight end in the draft to work with over the next year and see if they can play. Keep in mind, the team does have until July 15th to work out an extension with Njoku.
This move of applying the tag just keeps him from hitting the open market.
The team certainly has more than two pending free agents set to leave, but with one of the major ones locked up, it becomes a little easier to breathe. Next on the list, finding a way to keep Clowney.
As for Njoku, however, this move was a win for the organization and the player as they can continue to work together on a deal everyone is happy with.