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SportsPulse: The 2020 NFL season is officially in the books. Mackenzie Salmon tells you where everybody stands heading into the offseason. USA TODAY

The window for NFL teams to use the franchise tag on one of their pending free agents opens at 4 p.m. ET on Tuesday. It’s a dicey mechanism, one that effectively ties a valuable player to his club, courtesy of a lucrative one-year contract – a proposition less-established players often jump at but proven stars bridle against due to the lack of long-term security tags afford.

Teams have until March 9 to use their franchise or (less costly) transition tag. Tagged players will still have the opportunity to sign long-term extensions

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