The New York Jets are unlikely to use the franchise tag on nose tackle Sione Pouha, according to published reports.
The 33-year-old Pouha is an integral part of the Jets defense, but with their current cap situation it would be hard to pay him top-five money at his position.
Last season, Pouha was excellent once again. He recorded 58 tackles and a sack on the way to being a bright spot in an otherwise dismal year for New York.
It's a very tricky situation for the Jets. They're not going to want to fork over so much dough because of their current situation, and yet they can't afford to lose Pouha's production. If he hits the open market, New York runs the risk of losing him to a desperate team with more free money to throw around.
The 325-pound lineman would be the only player worth tagging for Gang Green. Another option would be to tag Pouha and work on a long-term deal with him in the meantime.
That comes with two risks however. How long do you want to sign a guy who's 33? Also, if it takes a while to sign him, you're losing out on other free agents.
Teams can place the franchise tag on players any time between now and March 5. Free agency begins March 13.
For more news on the Jets, be sure to check out SB Nation New York and Gang Green Nation.