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Chargers among NFL teams ready to tender RFAs

Discussion in 'American Football' started by Concudan, Feb 28, 2011.

  1. Concudan

    Concudan Meh... Staff Member Administrator

    Mar 5, 2006
    By Kevin Acee

    INDIANAPOLIS — Teams will go ahead with tendering players who would be restricted free agents under current NFL rules, league executives and coaches confirmed Thursday at the Scouting Combine.

    This means the Chargers will likely place tenders on safety Eric Weddle and wide receiver Malcom Floyd, among others, next week to prepare for possibility the players are still under the team's control when a new Collective Bargaining Agreement is completed.

    The current league year ends at 9 p.m. PT March 3, and owners are expected to lock out players if no new CBA is agreed to by then.

    Ultimately, whenever a new CBA is in place, the tenders may have no effect.

    Given the uncertainty -- that many of those players will likely be granted unrestricted free agency under the new CBA -- one executive called the tenders "a paper exercise."

    League personnel have been forbidden by the league from commenting on anything pertaining to a possible lockout.

    Two agents of players expected to be tendered decried the anticipated tenders but predicted they would ultimately be rendered moot.

    Currently, it takes six accrued seasons for a player to become unrestricted. But a new CBA is expected to revert to the previous rules that qualify a player for unrestricted free agency after four seasons.

    The qualifications changed for 2010 as a result of it being the last year under the CBA.

    Weddle, who has four accrued seasons, and Floyd, who has five, are expected to be priorities for the Chargers regardless of their free agent status and will almost certainly be given the highest tender next week. Right tackle Jeromey Clary, who has four accrued seasons, would also likely be highly tendered. Other possible tenders are safety Paul Oliver and linebacker Brandon Siler.

    A total of nine Chargers free agents have four or five years of service.

    Linebacker Antwan Applewhite and running back Mike Tolbert have three season and will be restricted free agents. Both are expected to receive tenders.

    A restricted free agent can negotiate with any team in the league, but if he signs with another team his original team would be entitled to draft picks determined by the level of the tender.

    Tendering a restricted free agent does not mean the Chargers won’t try to work out a long-term deal with that player.

    The team is expected to resume trying to proactively lock up its players with long-term deals after the labor morass is cleared up, something it has practically ceased the past 2½ years. The Chargers awarded 12 significant contracts to players shy of free agency between 2005 and the summer of ’08. Since then, only stars Philip Rivers and Antonio Gates have gotten such deals.

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