The new league year doesn't start until March 11, but some offseason activity may begin as early as today, when the Kansas City Chiefs, along with the rest of the 31 NFL clubs can make one of the following three designations to players, listed below, just like Kansas City did with Chiefs Hall of Fame DE Neil Smith, who was designated as the team's franchise player in 1993.
Non-Exclusive Franchise Tender
This option means the Chiefs agree to pay the player for one year at the percentage against the current salary cap of the top-five highest salaries over the past five seasons. The player is allowed to negotiate with any club, but if he signs with another team, the tag-tendering team will receive two first-round draft choices as compensation.
Exclusive Franchise Tender
With this option, the Chiefs must agree to pay their player for one year at the average of the five largest current-year salaries at his position, until the end of the restricted free-agent signing period. The amount cannot be lower than the non-exclusive franchise tender. In this designation, the player is not allowed to negotiate with any other team.
Transition Player Designation
This option means the Chiefs must agree to pay their player the cap-percentage average of the 10 largest prior-year salaries at his position. The player is allowed to negotiate with any other team and should he sign with that team, it is not bound by any compensation in signing a transition player.
The tendering club has a seven-day waiting period to decide whether or not to match transition or franchise tags. If a player is being franchise tagged for a second time by the same team, the base tender goes up to 120% of the previous salary calculation. Last year, the Chiefs used the franchise tag on offensive tackle Branden Albert.
Kansas City Chiefs- All-Time Franchise Players:
T Branden Albert, 2013
WR Dwayne Bowe, 2012
LB Tamba Hali, 2011
DE Jared Allen, 2008
TE Tony Gonzalez, 2002
G Will Shields, 2000
DE Dan Williams, 1998
DE Neil Smith, 1993