Chris Thompson and Will Compton are expected to be two key contributors for the 2017 Washington Redskins. Technically both are unsigned but they don’t have many options.
The third-down back and starting Mike linebacker both were tendered as restricted free agents by the team. Thompson was given a second-round tender, which offered him a one-year salary of $2.7 million while Compton got the low tender at $1.8 million.
The tenders give both of them the opportunity to go out and solicit offer sheets for their services. If the Redskins choose to match an offer sheet the players would remain with the team. If they opt not to match they would have received a second-round pick as compensation for Thompson and no compensation for Compton.
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But as of 4 p.m. today those options will no longer be on the table. That is the deadline for players to sign offer sheets with other teams. After today they revert to having their rights held exclusively by the Redskins.
[Note: An earlier version had the wrong deadline for signing an offer sheet.]
The two players should now seriously consider signing their tenders, which they have not done according to the roster on the team’s website. They can’t go anyplace else and there is a significant downside if they don’t sign them by June 15.
What happens on June 15? The team has the right to withdraw the tender offer and substitute the cleverly named “June 15 tender”. The salary for that tender is 110 percent of the player’s 2016 salary. For Thompson that would be $742,500 and for Compton it would be $660,000.
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Certainly, both players would like to get long-term contracts rather than signing one-year deals. But they can still negotiate for a deal after they sign the tenders. And they really don’t gain any leverage by not signing since in less than two months they face large reductions in pay.
I would expect both players to sign at some point prior to June 15, probably much sooner. The best course of action would be to sign, play well this year, and set themselves up for a good payday as unrestricted free agents in 2018.