Ryan Clady draws Denver Broncos' franchise tag


Denver Broncos vice president of player personnel John Elway let the cat out of the bag two weeks ago that left tackle Ryan Clady would draw the franchise tag by the March 4 deadline.

The Broncos made the transaction official on Friday, a source apprised of the move tells NFL.com's Albert Breer. The non-exclusive franchise tag will ensure a $9.828 million salary for Clady in 2013.

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Bouncing back from a disappointing 2011 season, Clady allowed just one sack in 2012 while playing through a shoulder injury that required post-season surgery.

According to ProFootballTalk, the Broncos have had no contract discussions with his representatives. Clady's shoulder rehab is expected to last five to six months, which means there is a good bet he won't healthy by the July deadline for franchised players to sign long-term deals.

Although Clady does not have designs on setting the market at left tackle, he is targeting a deal somewhere between Joe Thomas' eight-year, $92 million contract and Jason Peters' six-year, $60.657 million pact. More likely, he will play out the season under the tag.

Follow Chris Wesseling on Twitter @ChrisWesseling.