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Chargers will not use franchise tag on TE Hunter Henry

A tag for Henry in 2021 would have cost upwards of $13 million.

Los Angeles Chargers v Las Vegas Raiders Photo by Chris Unger/Getty Images

On Tuesday morning, NFL insider Adam Schefter broke the news that the Chargers will not be placing the franchise on Hunter Henry for the second year in a row.

This year’s tag would have cost the team around $13 million, so it did not make a ton of financial sense heading into a year with a shrinking cap. Henry will hit the market, but the team is still likely to work towards a long-term deal to re-sign the sixth-year tight end.

This past season, Henry recorded career-highs in both receptions and targets with 60 and 93 respectively. His 613 receiving yards were also good for the second-highest mark of his career. He also was just about healthy for the entire 2020 season before he had to sit out the final two games on the schedule.

Right now, Henry is one of the NFL’s truly complete tight ends. Not many players have his elite combination of receiving and blocking skills in one package and it’d be smart for the Chargers to make sure he doesn’t go anywhere.

The argument against Henry re-signing to a long-term deal is of course his inability to stay healthy for an entire season, and he has yet to show that he can be in the same tier as the Travis Kelces, the George Kittles, and the Rob Gronkowskis. Until then, it’s understandable that a number of fans may not want to spend $11-$12 million per year on a player who isn’t at the very top of his position.