Cardinals use franchise tag to lock up Chandler Jones

Chandler Jones

Following up on a pledge from earlier this month, the Arizona Cardinals have used the franchise tag to lock up pass rusher Chandler Jones.

Cardinals president Michael Bidwill said recently that the team would use the franchise tag to keep Jones from hitting the open market (more on that here).

This move pays Jones roughly $14.6 million guaranteed this year if the two parties do not come to an agreement on a long-term deal. It’s hard to say Jones is not worth it, however. He was the team’s best outside pass rusher last season, racking up 11 sacks, four forced fumbles and 49 total tackles.

Still just 26 years old, Jones is just now coming into the prime of his career. He would have commanded top dollar in the open market as a free agent, and the Cardinals will have their work cut out to come to an amenable long-term deal.

Even if that doesn’t happen before now and the start of camp, the Cardinals will be happy to have Jones rushing the passer for at least one more year after making a trade for him before last season.