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Washington Redskins coach Ron Rivera made some solid moves leading up to the NFL Combine with the release of veteran talent such as cornerback Josh Norman and wide receiver Paul Richardson. Now he continues to shape his team by making the decision to place a non-exclusive franchise tag on guard Brandon Scherff.
Scherff is the first NFL guard to earn a franchise tag since 2011. New England was the last team to use this designation at the guard position.
Last season, Scherff played and started in 11 games while only giving up one and a half sacks and was named to the Pro Bowl. However, Scherff has missed 13 games over the past two years due to injuries.
While the talent is there, it makes sense that the Redskins don’t want to lock themselves into a long-term commitment. The franchise tag allows them to potentially evaluate him for another season before making a big decision on his future with the organization.
With the non-exclusive franchise tag, Scherff can sign his franchise tender right away or shop for another team to try and get an offer sheet. If another team signs him to an offer sheet, the Redskins have a chance to match it but if the Redskins don’t match the offer, the new team must give up two first-round picks as compensation in order to steal Scherff away.
Scherff is entering his sixth NFL season after originally being selected by the Redskins in the first round (5th overall) of the 2015 NFL Draft. For his career, Scherff has appeared in 65 regular season games with 65 starts. Scherff has earned Pro Bowl selections three times in his career in 2016, 2017 and 2019. In 2015, he was named a PFWA All-Rookie performer.
Scherff, 28, played collegiately at Iowa from 2011-14, where he received the Outland Trophy, which is awarded annually to the nation’s most outstanding interior lineman.
He also earned unanimous consensus All-American honors and was named first-team All-Big Ten for the second consecutive season. Plus, he won the Rimington-Pace Offensive Lineman of the Year award in the Big Ten Conference.