And according to a report from Ian Rapoport of NFL Network, Chicago does not plan on giving Jeffery the tag.
This is pretty superb news for Jeffery’s camp. Alshon played in just 20 games the last two years and, but he’s a top-level wideout, who is just 27 years old and about to hit the open market.
The last three offseasons have seen receivers well below Jeffery’s talent level get paid a premium amount on the open market.
The Lions gave Marvin Jones five years, $40 million (with $20 million guaranteed), the Chiefs gave Jeremy Maclin five years, $55 million (with $22.5 million guaranteed), DeSean Jackson got three years, $24 million (with $16 million guaranteed) from the Redskins and in 2013, which feels like five million years ago, Greg Jennings got five years $45 million from the Vikings and Mike Wallace got five years, $60 million from the Dolphins.
It’s odd the Bears aren’t interested in using the tag, because it would only cost them about $14.599 million and they should have plenty of cap space if the number comes in around the $160 million to $165 million range expected.
But the biggest difference is he’s hitting the open market. There’s no limit -- outside of the salary cap -- for what he can get paid. And if a team wants to woo him to their city, there will be a lot of guaranteed money involved. The salary cap is also expected to be at an all-time high, with plenty of teams possessing cap space.
Green leads in average value ($15 million per year), Julio leads in total value ($71.25 million), while Demaryius leads in percent guaranteed (50 percent) among that group.
It wouldn’t be surprising at all if Jeffery eclipsed all three. On an open market with a young, game-changing receiver, a five-year, $80 million contract with north of $40 million guaranteed isn’t out of the question.
It sounds crazy, but it’s just not that unrealistic if you think about the confluence of Jeffery’s talents, the size of the salary cap and the available cap space to plenty of teams in need of a wide receiver.