The NFL’s best kicker is set to get new money and it’s going to have an affect on the ongoing Robbie Gould saga:
Meanwhile, the #Ravens just announced they locked up All-Pro K Justin Tucker on a contract extension. This will also impact the #49ers and K Robbie Gould, who is on (unsigned) the franchise tag and sources say will not be traded.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) April 24, 2019
NFL Network insider Ian Rapoport reports that the 49ers will not trade disgruntled kicker Robbie Gould, who reportedly asked for a trade on Tuesday to be closer to his family in Chicago. Gould was given the Franchise tag at the start of the offseason and remains un-signed – despite having laid out what he wanted in a new contract prior to free agency.
So where does Justin Tucker’s extension with the Ravens come into play? For starters, Tucker’s new deal is going to set the market for kickers in a big way:
Ravens are giving kicker Justin Tucker a four-year, $23.05 million extension, including $12.5 million fully guaranteed in the first two years and an $8 million signing bonus, per source. All records for a kicker. Tucker tied to Baltimore through the 2023 season.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) April 24, 2019
Gould now has a new angle from which to negotiate from as he seeks a multi-year deal. Tucker is now the highest-paid kicker in the game and Gould is going to want his piece of the pie after connecting on 93.2 percent of his field goals over the last two seasons. At minimum, Tucker’s new deal is going to have an impact on the actual Franchise tag number. Players on the Franchise tag are offered a one-year contract for no less than the top-5 cap hits at the position. Prior to Tucker’s extension, the kicker tag was valued at $4.971 million. Tucker receiving a contract that is worth $5.76 million per year will essentially bump that tag number up a notch.
If there were teams interested in trading for Gould, the Tucker news could have a trickle-down impact on teams inquiring on the kicker’s availability. Cap-strapped teams might be less likely to try and swing a deal for a kicker who is going to command a salary worth more than $5 million per season because of the salary cap ramifications. With that in mind, it’s worth noting the Bears still have $17,622,024 in available cap space, according to OverTheCap.com. This is important, especially if you consider teams with kicker concerns (who happen to be closer to Chicago than San Francisco) such as Tampa Bay ($1,795,449), Minnesota ($1,899,616), Atlanta ($2,621,549), and Pittsburgh ($5,817,425) are really up against it. Then again, if the 49ers are standing firm on their no-trade stance, then this might not matter.
But still … let’s keep an eye on this developing situation because there are probably more layers to be peeled. Having a no-trade policy right now is understandable, but will it be the same once a proposed deal reaches San Francisco? Stay tuned.