Panthers' Brian Burns and Bengals' Tee Higgins stand out among players tagged for 2024 NFL season

NFL teams had until 4 p.m. Tuesday to place a franchise tag on a player of their choice, and several used this window to lock up key contributors for the 2024 season.

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Next on the NFL offseason slate will be the free agency period, which begins March 13, when some players expected to be in the franchise tag conversation can begin talking to other teams about reaching a new deal. .

Let's look at some of the franchise-tagged players who still have a chance to negotiate a long-term deal before their price tags lock in for 2024.

LB Brian Burns – Carolina Panthers

With a staggering salary of $24 million, Burns was franchise tagged by the Panthers. And while that's a high salary for a single season, he and the organization aren't seeing things the same way right now.

But the tag gives the Panthers more time for Burns, who has 46 career sacks over five seasons with 246 combined tackles and two Pro Bowl nods, to possibly find common ground on a lucrative new deal.

Burns has a non-exclusive tag with the Panthers, meaning he can talk to other teams. If he is presented with a contract, the Panthers have the opportunity to match him or take draft compensation instead.

WR Tee Higgins – Cincinnati Bengals

This move was made early. The Bengals announced late last month that they were tagging Higgins for a $21.8 million salary cap hit.

Like Burns, the Bengals want to continue negotiating with Higgins to keep him on the team in an offense that quarterback Joe Burrow believed he would feature Ja'Marr Chase and Higgins in 2024.

Higgins had a tough year in 2023 after having back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons in 2021 and 2022, catching 42 passes for 656 yards and five touchdowns. Injuries had a lot to do with that. He missed five games, and Burrow also went down midseason with a wrist injury.

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