The deadline for using the franchise tag came and went today, and the New England Patriots did not use it. Cornerback Aqib Talib, and wide receiver Julian Edelman were the two guys with the best chance of getting tagged, but as expected, neither of them were.
If Talib were tagged, he would be scheduled to make over $10 million in 2014. He is good, but not that good. The same goes for Edelman. If tagged, he would be making just about the same amount of money, which is just ridiculous for a player that can be easily replaced.
This means that both of them will hit the open market, which could be bad for the Pats. Re-signing Talib should be priority number one for New England, because with him on the field, their secondary instantly becomes one of the best in football. And as we saw in the AFC Championship game, when he is out, their defensive backfield struggles mightily. Hopefully the Patriots will still be able to lock him up, but letting him go to the open market is definitely a risky move.