Raiders place franchise tag on Wimbley

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Adam Caplan

Adam Caplan is our newest NFL reporter/insider at He has spent the past 10 seasons covering the league, specializing in player personnel, injuries and contracts.


The Oakland Raiders placed a non-exclusive franchise tag on starting outside linebacker Kamerion Wimbley on Thursday -- but that was not their original plan.


Check out which players had the franchise tag placed on them.

As first reported by Adam Caplan of,  Wimbley’s rookie contract was set to void because he met minimum playing time standards set forth in the deal. However, the Raiders had a buyback provision (more like a roster bonus) which stated they could buy one season back at about $3.5 million.

But that $3.5 million buyback provision would violate the 30 percent rule, which states base salaries can’t go up more than 30 percent from the previous season. Wimbley earned $2.115 million for 2010.

Wimbley and his agent, according two league sources, challenged the validity of the contract as it pertains to the 30 percent rule in this case and apparently won after the NFLPA and NFL Management Council discussed the situation further.

In the end, Wimbley would have become an unrestricted free agent at the start of the new league year. Because of that, the Raiders used their non-exclusive franchise tag on Wimbley, which was valued at just over $10 million for the 2011 season

Once Wimbley signs the one-year tender, the salary becomes guaranteed.

Wimbley, who was selected in the first round of the 2006 NFL Draft by the Cleveland Browns, was acquired from the Browns in March of 2010 for a 2010 third-round pick.

In other news, the Raiders also agreed to a three-year contract extension with starting CB Stanford Routt valued at roughly $31 million on Thursday.

Tagged: Raiders, Kamerion Wimbley

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