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'Skins using franchise tag to keep Brandon Scherff

The Washington Redskins haven't gotten a long-term deal done with Brandon Scherff, but they're making sure he doesn't walk for greener pastures.

The Redskins franchise tagged Scherff on Saturday, NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported, per a source informed of the situation. The team quickly confirmed the tag with a release. The tag placed on Scherff is the non-exclusive tag, NFL Network's Tom Pelissero reported.

Washington wanted to get a long-term deal done with the three-time Pro Bowl guard, Rapoport reported March 6, but resorted to the tag to protect against losing the premier blocker with free agency on the horizon and the legal tampering period coming in mere days. Under the non-exclusive tag, Scherff can still negotiate with other teams, but the Redskins hold the right to match whatever offer sheet he might sign.

Back before sweeping organizational changes were made in Washington, the former Redskins' front-office leaders were offering Scherff a long-term deal worth more than $13 million per year, per Rapoport. That number wasn't much higher than the salary Scherff earned in his final season of his rookie contract, and fell below the salaries of Dallas' Zack Martin and Jacksonville's Andrew Norwell.

We don't know if Washington's new regime upped the number or not, or if Scherff feels comfortable with sticking around in Washington, but we do know he'll be there in 2020 unless he's traded. With uncertainty regarding the current collective bargaining agreement and how it might change the financial landscape for players like Scherff, the Redskins are playing it safe by making sure he doesn't walk out the door. And for Scherff, he's guaranteed to make an average of the top five salaries at his position before potentially cashing in on a better deal under a new CBA, which could come as soon as Sunday morning.

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