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Eric Berry gets Chiefs' non-exclusive franchise tag

The Kansas City Chiefs won't let the Comeback Player of the Year reach free agency.

The Chiefs applied the non-exclusive franchise tag safety Eric Berry on Tuesday, NFL Media's Ian Rapoport reported. 

"Our goal is to keep Eric in Kansas City for the foreseeable future," Chiefs General Manager John Dorsey said in a statement. "He's a special player that means a lot to our organization, the city, and has been a critical piece in building our foundation. With today being the deadline to use the franchise tag, we felt it was in the best interest of the club to place the tag on Eric."

The non-exclusive franchise tag for safeties sits at $10.806 million. Other team would have the option to negotiation and sign Berry to a tender, with K.C. owning the option to match. If it's not matched, that team would owe the Chiefs two first-round draft picks -- this is the tag used on most players. Outside of quarterbacks, most teams aren't willing to risk two first-round draft picks for a position player, meaning Berry will be a Chief in 2016.

The sides have until July 15 to hammer out a long-term deal.

Berry returned from Hodgkin's lymphoma this season without missing a beat, earning his fourth Pro Bowl selection and second first-team All-Pro designation along with the Comeback Player of the Year award.

Keeping Berry in Kansas City was a priority for general manager John Dorsey.

One of the best overall safeties in the NFL, Berry excels in coverage, allowing the Chiefs leeway on their back end and pressure packages. Berry played at a lighter weight in 2015 after beating cancer, allowing him to faster and more aggressive than his previous campaigns.

The Chiefs have a bevy of free agents on the defensive side of the ball they would like to keep, including Tamba Hali, Derrick Johnson, Jaye Howard, Tyvon Branch and so on.

Locking Berry down is priority No. 1. They'll use the a franchise tag to ensure he goes nowhere.

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