The Jaguars announced Wednesday that they have placed the franchise tag on Pro Bowl TE Marcedes Lewis.
The team will have until March 3 to negotiate a long-term deal with the five-year veteran, who caught 58 passes for 700 yards and a team-best 10 touchdowns in 2010. After March 3, all negotiations will cease until a new Collective Bargaining Agreement is ratified.
If Lewis were to have hit hit the open market, he would have been much in demand considering his pass-catching ability and reputation as one of the top blocking tight ends. He was named to his first Pro Bowl this past season.
The way we see it
The Jaguars were hopeful to reach a long-term deal with Lewis by March 3, but with not a lot of progress being made, the club simply could not afford to let one of its best players hit the open market with his stock at an all-time high. The Jaguars will continue to negotiate a long-term extension with Lewis, who is coming off a breakout season and reportedly wants to remain in Jacksonville.