The Redskins might or might not use the franchise tag. They might or might not slap it on tight end Fred Davis. Or they might or might not use it on safety LaRon Landry. There's little doubt, though, that their offseason and those of other teams will be affected by what teams decide with their own players.
Players to watch when it comes to the tag:
Green Bay's Jermichael Finley » He's clearly the No. 1 tight end potentially hitting the open market. He's an athletic marvel, who can split out wide and run like a receiver. But if he gets tagged (it would be $5.5 million for a tight end), and a team wants a playmaking tight end, there could be more of a market for Davis. After Finley, Davis is the biggest receiving threat at tight end on the market.
San Diego's Vincent Jackson » He's the best potential free agent receiver -- in a deep class. Jackson wants a long-term deal. But if he's free -- there are mixed reports as to whether the Chargers would franchise him a second time -- then a team with lots of cap space (the Redskins, for example) would be wise to pursue him. The Chargers have the cap room to franchise him (at a cost of $13.7 million), but it might cost them the ability to sign a couple more of their free agents.
Pittsburgh's Mike Wallace » If Pittsburgh, which has salary cap problems, can't afford the franchise tag then it risks losing him. The Steelers can match any offer to the restricted free agent, if it works under the cap. If not, they'd receive a first-round pick. By the way, if the Redskins signed him, they'd have to relinquish the No. 6 pick in the draft. Better to sign another free agent wideout and save the pick.
Kansas City's Dwayne Bowe » He's not a deep threat, but he is a threat after the catch (with 359 yards last season and 19 plays of 20 yards or more -- one more than Wallace). The Chiefs' offense can't afford to lose a guy like Bowe and they have cap room. If he enters the market, he'll be a top target.
- John Keim