One week ago, the Seattle Seahawks announced they were using the franchise tag on Frank Clark. Clark was “looking forward to what the future holds” and sharing his appreciation to Russell Wilson after the word got around of the news.
Now, according to Ian Rapoport, Clark is apparently calling for “the deal that he has earned,” and threatening to hold out until the start of the regular season. If no deal is reached, and he plays under the tag this season, “they’ll only have him for another 16 games.”
On #Seahawks pass-rusher Frank Clark: He won’t be signing his franchise tag or showing up to training camp unless the Seahawks give him the deal that he has earned, I’m told. If they don’t, they’ll only have him for another 16 games... when other top FAs are up, too.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 10, 2019
The tag ensures that Clark is set to earn $17.1 million for the 2019 season, and while Rapoport’s tweet says that he “won’t be signing his franchise tag,” it’s more likely that he would simply wait until the start of the season to sign it. But as we saw with Le’Veon Bell in the 2018 season, a player doesn’t have to sign the tag and can choose to sit out the entire year.
Considering teams can only use one tag per year, using the franchise tag on Clark does put pressure on the Seahawks to extend some of their other star players this offseason with Russell Wilson, Bobby Wagner, and Jarran Reed all entering the final season of their current contracts.
The reality in Rapoport’s tweet is that there’s no giant revelation. It doesn’t seem like something that even needs sourcing, to a large extent. Clark wants an extension over playing on a franchise tag — common sense — and perhaps there’s a threat that if he plays on the tag, he won’t sign an extension with Seattle. That last part would also be rectified with the Seahawks then giving Clark an outrageously good offer later down the line.
Am I really tired or does this not make sense? Why would they have him for 16 games if he won't sign the tag? https://t.co/CXd7CNyzcJ— Matty F. Brown (@mattyfbrown) March 10, 2019
Unless I'm missing something, this tweet doesn't make sense because if he doesn't sign the tag then he won't be playing any games at all https://t.co/Dg5xmhaSmT— Ben Baldwin (@benbbaldwin) March 10, 2019
The timing on this report is also curious, since Clark doesn’t seem to be unhappy with the situation and is actively recruiting players to Seattle on Twitter. It would also be helpful to know the source of the rumor. Coming from Clark’s agent, it could mean that he’s unhappy with the current deal on the table. If it’s coming from the Seahawks, it could mean they’re trying to generate more interest in a potential trade.
Either way, if you did see this tweet, consider this as a companion to it that says: nothing much to see here.