Wielding the franchise tag as leverage, the Kansas City Chiefs danced a high-wire act Monday afternoon.
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Although Albert has battled inconsistency as well as a late-season back injury, his pass-blocking chops are among the best in the league. According to Pro Football Focus' metrics, Albert has allowed fewer sacks and fewer combined quarterback hits and hurries than both Ryan Clady and Jake Long over the past two seasons.
The move allows Albert, a college guard, to kick inside if the club opts for a left tackle with the No. 1 overall pick in the draft. Of course, that would run counter to Albert's demonstrated strengths as a player.
If a tackle is drafted with the first-round pick, the Chiefs will have options with Albert in negotiations. Should he balk at signing the franchise tender, which carries a one-year contract number of $9,828,000, or a long-term contract, the offer can be rescinded without paying a dime.