After failing to reach a long-term agreement with starting defensive end, Calais Campbell, the Arizona Cardinals placed their non-exclusive franchise tag on him, keeping him around for at least one more season, according to the team's official site.
There is still a sense of optimism that Campbell, his agents and the Cardinals brass can come to a multi-year deal, but for now... You're it, Calais.
By placing the non-exclusive tag on Campbell, another team is still able to come in and sign him, but the likelihood is diminished significantly. If a team were to sign Campbell, they would then be forced to surrender two first-round picks to the Cardinals in exchange. Needless to say, that will not be happening.
So while Campbell's future remains cloudy, he will be making a hefty income in 2012. As per the rules of the franchise tag, CC will be paid among the top defensive ends in the league. According to Darren Urban, not only will his salary be 100% guaranteed, but it should pay him in excess of $11 million this season.
Although Calais is glad to be a Cardinal through at least next season, he wishes that an agreement could have been made. He tweeted his reaction to receiving the tag earlier today:
Well I'm happy to be a Cardinal for at least one more year but I look forward to the possibility of getting a long term deal done as well— Calais Campbell (@Campbell93) March 2, 2012
From what it sounds like, Campbell does intend on signing the tender.
If the team does reach a long-term deal with him before the tag goes into effect in July, then they will begin paying on his new contract and the tag will basically go away.
Cardinals fans remain hopeful that this does not become a Karlos Dansby-esque type of situation and that both sides will be able to figure something out sooner than later.