Reports from Friday suggested that Titans free agent TE Jared Cook is looking to pick up where Packers TE Jermichael Finley left off last year in regards to being classified as a wide receiver, instead of a tight end.
Jim Wyatt of the Tennessean reported on Friday that the Titans are prepared to use their franchise tag on Cook before the March 4 deadline, but Cook issue is related to compensation, as tight ends stand to make $4 million less than receivers.
The Titans flexed Cook out 57 percent of his snaps last season, according to Ian Rapoport, so he’s hoping that this will be enough to convince an arbitrator that he should be considered a receiver. This argument didn’t hold for Finley last season, but there’s actually a precedent for splitting the difference between franchise tags.
Terrell Suggs previously argued that he should be considered defensive end and not an outside linebacker based on the same logic and wound up with the difference between the two tags.
Wide receivers will receive $10.537 million this season while the tight end figure comes in at $6.066 million.
Cook, 25, was reportedly looking for a long-term contract and fresh start this offseason, but the Titans have remained adamant that they want him to be a part of their long-term plans. They’ll need to do a better job of getting him involved in their offense next season if they’re to persuade him to remain in Tennessee for the coming years.
We have Cook listed as the No. 40 best available player in our Top 50 Free Agents list.