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Panthers Officially Franchise DT Kawann Short

Update:

Adam Schefter reports that the Panthers have officially franchised DT Kawann Short on Monday, as expected.

The Panthers have already confirmed that they’ve used the non-exclusive tag on Short:

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Joe Person of the Charlotte Observer writes that the Panthers are likely to use their franchise tag on Pro Bowl DT Kawann Short before Wednesday’s deadline to tag free agents.

Last year, the Panthers used their franchise tag on CB Josh Norman only to surprisingly rescind it a few months later and allow Norman to become a free agent.

While it remains to be seen whether Short will sign the tender right away, Person mentions that there’s no reason to think this situation will play out like it did with Norman last year.

It shouldn’t come as a big surprise to hear that the Panthers are likely to tag Short, considering that this has been the general expectation for some time.

The franchise tag next year is projected (NFLTR) to cost the Panthers around $13.615 million guaranteed. However, this won’t prevent the two sides from working on a long-term deal that could come with a lower cap figure for next season.

Short, 28, was taken in the second-round of the 2013 NFL Draft and has played out the final year of his four-year, $4.630 million rookie contract. Short made a base salary of $1,036,410 for the 2016 season and is now in position to test the open market as an unrestricted free agent in the coming months.

In 2016, Short appeared in all 16 games for the Panthers and recorded 55 tackles, six sacks, a forced fumble and three pass defenses. Pro Football Focus has him rated as the No. 3 interior defensive lineman out of 127 qualifying players.

We have him featured in our Top 100 – 2017 Free Agents list.