The Washington Commanders had a busy night.
They became the first team in the 2023 offseason to franchise tag one of their players.
Washington DT Daron Payne became the first player this off-season to receive the franchise tag, per sources. The franchise tag for Payne is projected to be $18.937 million. Washington placed the tag on Payne early this morning. pic.twitter.com/cmbeaRciig
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) February 28, 2023
Daron Payne, a five-year NFL veteran, was franchised tagged in the wee hours of the night.
Payne was an incredible force on the Commanders’ defensive line, racking up 61 tackles and 11.5 sacks.
If fully healthy, the Commanders could have one of the league’s best defensive lines, especially if Chase Young is able to perform to his usual abilities.
After this move, fans of the NFL took to Twitter to discuss their thoughts.
With Daron Payne being franchise tagged, the Chicago Bears need to pivot in FA to other options.
• Javon Hargrave
• Dre’Mont Jones
If Larry Ogunjobi has no hard feelings (doubt it / wouldn’t blame him), I wouldn’t mind the discount on him now that he’s healthy.
— Joseph Herff (@JosephHerffNFL) February 28, 2023
Many Chicago Bears fans were upset, considering that they have a pressing need for defensive linemen.
Payne was a potential option for their franchise which is now forced to look elsewhere.
Now sign Daron Payne to a new contract with that new found cap. Don't get comfortable with it. https://t.co/tyHzgeZBlr
— TheHogsdotNetv2 (@TheHogsdotNetv2) February 27, 2023
As this Commanders fan points out, this was a move that many were expecting.
The Commanders finished the 2022 season with an 8-8-1 record, which found them in last place in the NFC East.
Payne will look to be a big part of the franchise moving forward, considering that the team has until July to sign him to a larger contract.
When a player like Payne is well-liked by fans, generally, the franchise does what it can to keep them around.
While the franchise tag isn’t a permanent solution, it’s certainly a step in the right direction.
There are several other moves that the Commanders have yet to make.
They recently cut Carson Wentz and will look to continue to build their roster for the 2023 season and beyond.NEXT: The Commanders Have Made A Decision On A Key Player