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Published: March 4, 2013 at 06:59 p.m.
Updated: March 4, 2013 at 07:25 p.m.

Franchise Tags: 32 things NFL teams need to franchise

The deadline to place the franchise tag on players has passed, but here's one thing we'll never understand: Why can you only franchise players? The franchise tag should be opened up to lots more things. With that in mind, here is a list of what every team should consider giving the franchise tag to.

32 Photos Total

  • Dallas Cowboys: The giant TV 32

    Tom Hauck/Associated Press

    Dallas Cowboys: The giant TV

    Whatever the Cowboys do, don't ever lose the giant TV. People might believe the TV is way too big for the stadium. Those people have never seen it.

  • New York Giants: MetLife Stadium 31

    Scott Boehm/Associated Press

    New York Giants: MetLife Stadium

    It was nice of the Jets to chip in on the construction of MetLife Stadium, but come on, two Super Bowl championships in the last five years means you are the true owner of the house, and the other team is just renting.

  • Philadelphia Eagles: Chuck Bednarik 30

    Mel Evans/Associated Press

    Philadelphia Eagles: Chuck Bednarik

    The face of the franchise from the team's last NFL championship in 1960, the current version of the Eagles could use a little bit of the "Concrete Charlie" attitude on defense (and maybe offense, as he was the last 60-minute player) to go along with the arrival of Chip Kelly. Oh, and bring back those green uniforms, too.

  • Washington Redskins: The red X-Ray shed 29

    Nick Wass/Associated Press

    Washington Redskins: The red X-Ray shed

    The X-Ray shed at FedEx Field was one of the biggest breakout stars of the 2012 playoffs. And while it was unfairly judged for being so plain, it did add a little bit of character to the stadium. A lot of the new stadiums try to build in charm (looking at you, New England) but sometimes the best features are the unintentional ones.

  • Chicago Bears: Smoking Jay Cutler website 28

    Rick Scuteri/Associated Press

    Chicago Bears: Smoking Jay Cutler website

    The Bears finally have a franchise quarterback for the first time in years (decades). But his biggest contribution might be the meme created in his honor in the "Smoking Jay Cutler" website. Lock that thing up now, and pass the smokes.

  • Detroit Lions: Barry Sanders 27

    David Stluka/Associated Press

    Detroit Lions: Barry Sanders

    You have to believe Sanders still has some life in those legs of his. Forget a comeback by Michael Jordan, Sanders is the one retired athlete we'd like to see make a return.

  • Green Bay Packers: Aaron Rodgers 26

    Tony Avelar/Associated Press

    Green Bay Packers: Aaron Rodgers

    This isn't a knock on Joe Flacco and his new contract. But Rodgers should be the highest paid quarterback in the league. Don't mess around with this, Packers.

  • Minnesota Vikings: Adrian Peterson's doctor 25

    Evan Vucci/Associated Press

    Minnesota Vikings: Adrian Peterson's doctor

    Yes, the return of Peterson was one of the biggest stories in the NFL last season. Maybe one of the biggest of the last decade. So while Peterson is locked up for years to come, the Vikings should make sure they don't let that doctor get away, either.

  • Atlanta Falcons: The red helmet look with black jerseys 24

    David Drapkin/Associated Press

    Atlanta Falcons: The red helmet look with black jerseys

    The Falcons like to break out the red helmets during the regular season. But this should really be the club's all-time look going forward.

  • Carolina Panthers: That kid from the commercials 23

    Jason DeCrow/Associated Press

    Carolina Panthers: That kid from the commercials

    Well the obvious choice might be Cam Newton right here. But the clear-cut winner should be the little kid from the Cam Newton commercial. He's already got the swagger going for him. So loosen up the franchise tag for him.

  • New Orleans Saints: The Super Bowl 22

    Ben Liebenberg/NFL

    New Orleans Saints: The Super Bowl

    New Orleans should be in the mix for the Super Bowl every year. And hopefully, you can lock up the Super Bowl to a long-term deal and then use the money you save to invest in some new transformers so, you know, nothing mysterious happens again.

  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Playing to the final gun 21

    Julio Cortez/Associated Press

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Playing to the final gun

    If there is one thing Greg Schiano instilled in his players this year, it's that the game is never over until it's over. So while playing at full speed when the other team is in the victory formation might have ruffled some feathers (right, Tom Coughlin?), it was a breath of fresh air.

  • Arizona Cardinals: Larry Fitzgerald 20

    Paul Connors/Associated Press

    Arizona Cardinals: Larry Fitzgerald

    Look Arizona, you don't have a lot going for you. Whatever you do, please don't let Fitzgerald go. Ever! Hold on to him with all of your might.

  • St. Louis Rams: City of Los Angeles 19

    Mark J. Terrill/Associated Press

    St. Louis Rams: City of Los Angeles

    A couple of teams have been rumored to be on L.A.'s short-list for relocation. But there's really one team which could make it work. The Rams should lay claim to the second-biggest market in sports with a franchise tag.

  • San Francisco 49ers: Colin Kaepernick 18

    Ben Liebenberg/NFL

    San Francisco 49ers: Colin Kaepernick

    Even if teams can slow down the read-option, Kaepernick is not going away anytime soon.

  • Seattle Seahawks: 12th Man 17

    Elaine Thompson/Associated Press

    Seattle Seahawks: 12th Man

    Congratulations Seattle, you have a claim for the best fans in not only football, but sports in general. Do what you can to make sure the 12th man is happy.

  • New England Patriots: Benjamin Brady 16

    Steven Senne/Associated Press

    New England Patriots: Benjamin Brady

    With Tom Brady extending his contract to become a Patriot for life, the Patriots should apply the tag to Brady's son Benjamin. They might as well start looking to the future now, and then lock the kid up with a long term deal after he gets out of preschool.

  • New York Jets: Fireman Ed 15

    Bill Kostroun/Associated Press

    New York Jets: Fireman Ed

    We've written about poor Fireman Ed ad nauseum, but the Jets need to be realistic. No one else on their roster is worth a tag anyway, so they might as well keep their most iconic fan around to boost morale.

  • Buffalo Bills: Jim Kelly 14

    Mike Groll/Associated Press

    Buffalo Bills: Jim Kelly

    We're closing in on 20 years since Jim Kelly retired, and the Bills are still searching for an answer at quarterback. They should tag Kelly and see if he's interested in making a comeback. If not, maybe Doug Flutie's available.

  • Miami Dolphins: Lauren Tannehill 13

    Steve Mitchell/USA TODAY Sports

    Miami Dolphins: Lauren Tannehill

    The Dolphins need to do everything in their power to keep Lauren Tannehill in Miami. Gisele Bundchen's reign as the NFL First Lady could be coming to a close soon, and nobody is primed to take her seat quite like Mrs. Tannehill.

  • Houston Texans:  J.J. Watt 12

    G. Newman Lowrance/Associated Press

    Houston Texans: J.J. Watt

    While his biceps or hands might seem more fitting, this offseason J.J. Watt has proved his heart is his biggest asset. From proposing to a little girl to appearing in a fan's wedding video, Watt has been doing his part to make fan dreams come true. The Texans would be wise to lock his big heart up for the long-run.

  • Indianapolis Colts: The cheerleaders 11

    AJ Mast/Associated Press

    Indianapolis Colts: The cheerleaders

    A punter, really? The Colts instead should have used their franchise tag on the cheerleaders who shaved their heads for Chuck Pagano. Devotion like that is hard to come by.

  • Jacksonville Jaguars:  Shad Khan's yacht 10

    Perry Knotts/Associated Press

    Jacksonville Jaguars: Shad Khan's yacht "Kismet"

    The Jaguars new owner Shad Khan was reportedly selling his yacht "Kismet" for a cool $112 million. Instead, he should just tag it so the Jaguars have a place to vacation as a team during the offseason. Salt water is the cure for everything, right? Even 2-14 seasons?

  • Tennessee Titans: Sean Butler 9

    Chris Pizzello/Associated Press

    Tennessee Titans: Sean Butler

    The jury is out on Jake Locker, but if the Titans want some real competition they could use their tag on Sean Butler, the fictional quarterback from ABC's Nashville. I mean, the guy was able to push away Hayden Panettiere's advances for the sake of watching game tape. Now that's devotion to the job.

  • Baltimore Ravens: Celebration floats 8

    Evan Habeeb/USA TODAY Sports

    Baltimore Ravens: Celebration floats

    With Flacco locked up, and Paul Kruger likely walking, the Ravens should target some sturdier celebration floats. The last thing they need is a star player spraining an ankle due to a float malfunction. That'd be worse than Rob Gronkowski getting injured dancing at a night club.

  • Pittsburgh Steelers: 7

    Ed Rieker/Associated Press

    Pittsburgh Steelers: "Six Rings" argument

    The Steelers proudest argument was nearly toppled this season when San Francisco barely missed out on their sixth Lombardi Trophy. Meanwhile, Green Bay has four trophies and Aaron Rodgers at the helm, meaning they could realistically be two seasons away from tying Pittsburgh as well. If the Steelers want to continue reveling in their six-ring glory they should use their tag wisely and lock up that argument.

  • Cincinnati Bengals: Michael Johnson 6

    Tom DiPace/Associated Press

    Cincinnati Bengals: Michael Johnson

    The Bengals have already used their franchise tag effectively by keep Michael Johnson in Cincinnati. Johnson helped fuel the Bengals top-ranked pass rush. Well done, Cincinnati.

  • Cleveland Browns: Hope 5

    Brandon Wade/Associated Press

    Cleveland Browns: Hope

    The Browns franchise and fans have been suffering for years, especially since the franchise came back to life in 1999. There's reason for optimism now with the amount of young talent on the roster. The Browns should tag this feeling of hope before it escapes their grasp for good.

  • Denver Broncos: Ryan Clady 4

    G. Newman Lowrance/Associated Press

    Denver Broncos: Ryan Clady

    Another smart tag here. Protecting Peyton Manning needs to be priority No. 1 in Denver, and keeping Clady for another season at least will do just that.

  • San Diego Chargers: Ryan Mathews' clavicle 3

    Nick Lucero/NFL

    San Diego Chargers: Ryan Mathews' clavicle

    Ryan Mathews’ career has been hindered lately by repeated injuries to his clavicle. If the Chargers were smart, they'd franchise a fancy new collarbone, maybe one made out of titanium, so the talented running back can assert his will against defenses for an entire season.

  • Oakland Raiders: Marquise Goodwin 2

    Michael Conroy/Associated Press

    Oakland Raiders: Marquise Goodwin

    Marquise Goodwin ran the fastest 40-yard dash at this year's NFL combine, and in the Al Davis era that was essentially an assurance he'd become a Raider. Even though Al's reign in Oakland is over, the team should stake their claim on Goodwin to keep Al's memory alive.

  • Kansas City Chiefs: Gates Bar-B-Q 1


    Kansas City Chiefs: Gates Bar-B-Q

    With Andy Reid now in town, and Gates Bar-B-Q being one of the most famous (and delicious) restaurants in Kansas City, the Chiefs would be wise to lock it up for next year while a long-term deal can be reached.

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