Ryan Clark – To Tag Or Not To Tag

With the new 3 year deal expected to be announced for nose tackle Casey Hampton sometime on Thursday, the attention now quickly turns to the other two restricted free agents the Steelers identified as offseason priorities. Those two of course are free safety Ryan Clark and kicker Jeff Reed. One way or another, Reed will get tagged if no new deal is reeached, the question is will the Steelers use the exclusive franchise tag or the transition tag now? Also, if the Steelers are serious about trying to get something done with Clark, they could use the other tag not used on Reed to try to work out a cap friendly front loaded contract with Clark as well. The Steelers are reportedly set to meet again with Clark\’s agent, Joel Turner, during the NFL combine this weekend. The franchise tag on safeties for 2010 is 6.455 million with the transition tag being $6.011 million. The chance the Steelers take with giving the transition tag to Reed is of course the ever looming poison pill. Clark too could be a risk of a pill if another team deems him worth 6+ million. it really is a coin flip right now on if Clark indeed will get tagged at all. Stay tuned as with the combine getting starting on Thursday and the anticipated news of a new deal for Big Snack, Thursday will be an eventful day for Steeler Nation.

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