NFL: Baltimore Ravens at Jacksonville Jaguars

Ahead of Tuesday afternoon's franchise-tag deadline, the Baltimore Ravens announced they had placed the franchise tag on defensive tackle Justin Madubuike

"We were unable to agree on a contract extension with Justin before the deadline and will use the franchise tag," Ravens general manager Eric DeCosta said in a statement. "Justin is a great player and person, and we will continue to negotiate a long-term deal with him."

This does not come as a surprise, as DeCosta told reporters at the NFL Scouting Combine that he will "probably" use the franchise tag on Madubuike if no extension could be reached by Tuesday, per The Athletic.

Madubuike is coming off of a career year in which he recorded 56 combined tackles, 13 sacks, 33 QB hits and 12 tackles for loss. His 13 sacks and 33 QB hits ranked first among all defensive tackles. Madubuike also went 11 straight games in which he recorded at least half a sack, which tied an NFL record. Originally a third-round pick of the Ravens back in 2020 out of Texas A&M, Madubuike has spent all four of his NFL seasons in Baltimore. 

In 2023, the Ravens became the first team in NFL history to lead or co-lead the league in scoring defense, sacks and takeaways. Madubuike was a big reason for Baltimore's success, as he was named a second-team All-Pro and chosen for his first Pro Bowl. He had his best NFL season at the perfect time, as he's now looking for a lucrative extension. Per Spotrac's market value tool, Madubuike is in line to sign a four-year, $81,287,936 extension that carries an AAV of $20.3 million. That contract would make him the No. 7 highest-paid defensive tackle in the NFL. 

If Madubuike plays on the tag in 2024, he would make $22,102,000, per Over The Cap