Franchise-player deal for Brian Orakpo would be worth nearly $11.5 million

February 28

The Redskins must decide by Monday whether to use the franchise tag on Brian Orakpo (Ricky Carioti/The Washington Post)

The Washington Redskins would have to give linebacker Brian Orakpo $11.455 million on a one-year contract to use their franchise player tag on him.

That’s the new franchise tag number for a linebacker, according to the NFL’s Web site, based on the sport’s 2014 salary cap of $133 million per team that was officially announced Friday.

The original projection for the franchise figure for a linebacker was about $10.9 million, based on a lower projection for the salary cap.

NFL teams have until Monday to use their franchise tags on players. Some teams began using the franchise player designations Friday.

If the Redskins use their franchise tag on Orakpo, a three-time Pro Bowl selection who led the team with 10 sacks last season, they would have the right to retain him by matching any contract offer by another team, and the right to receive two first-round draft choices as compensation from Orakpo’s new club if they allow him to depart. The Redskins have not said whether they will use the franchise tag on Orakpo if they’re unable to sign him to a new contract before Monday’s deadline.

Orakpo is eligible for unrestricted free agency March 11. Signing him to a long-term deal would be more expensive overall for the Redskins but such a contract likely would be far more cap-friendly in the 2014 season than the franchise-player deal.

The Redskins alternatively could use the transition tag on Orakpo for a cost of $9.754 million. That would give the Redskins the right to retain him by matching any offer by another team, but not the right to receive draft-pick compensation if he leaves.

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