The Patriots have placed the non-exclusive franchise tag on nose tackle Vince Wilfork.
Wilfork and the Patriots can still work towards a long-term agreement. He can also negotiate with other teams, but any team making an offer must be willing to give up two first-round picks to sign him. If a long-term agreement is not reached, he will be paid $7.003 million next season.
Wilfork’s wife, Bianca, spoke on her Twitter account about the tag being placed on her husband:
“In regards to the many calls and emails I am receiving in response to the franchise tag we figured this would be the easiest way to (address it), The franchise tag has been applied. After six years of dedicated service, I do understand this is a business. With that being said, it is my hope that the tag is applied for its true purpose. For the purpose of allotting more time for us to continue our talks and be able to reach along term agreement. Only time will tell what the final result will be.”
The Patriots also released a statement regarding the assignment of the tag:
“A long-term agreement with Vince Wilfork has been the team’s top contractual priority for some time. Unfortunately, despite numerous conversations and proposals, the goal has not yet been realized. Vince is a tremendous player for our team and remains a significant part of our future plans. It is because of Vince’s importance to this organization that we have assigned the franchise designation as we continue to work toward a long-term agreement. We are hopeful that Vince will remain a Patriot for many years to come.”