The Jacksonville Jaguars placed the franchise tag on Pro Bowl tight end Marcedes Lewis on Wednesday. NFL.com senior writer Steve Wyche, citing a source with knowledge of the situation, first reported the likelihood of the move if the Jaguars and Lewis' representatives couldn't come to terms on a long-term contract extension.
According to Wyche, Jacksonville continues to have dialogue with Lewis's representatives about a new deal. The franchise tag for tight ends is worth $7.3 million for the 2011 season.
Lewis, who just completed his fifth pro season -- all with the Jags, has long been known as a strong run blocker, but he took things to a new level as a receiver this past season. He had career highs in receptions (58), touchdowns (10) and yards (700) as he emerged as the Jaguars' top scoring threat.
Lewis, a first-round pick in 2006, has 181 career receptions for 2,224 yards and 17 touchdowns. The 17 receiving touchdowns are the fourth-most in Jaguars history while his 2,224 receiving yards are the second-most among tight ends.