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According to a source with knowledge of the situation, Raiders strong safety Tyvon Branch will receive the franchise tag.
With only a few days to go before the deadline to apply the tag the two sides remain far apart to reach a long-term contract.
It’s not impossible that the Raiders will reach a long-term agreement with Branch at some point in the future, but at least one side feels a deal can’t be reached before the deadline on Monday.
Branch just completed his rookie contract worth about $2.2 million and is looking for pay in-line with starting role. Branch averaged 112 tackles per season since becomming a starter at the beginning of the 2009 season.
Branch has been used as a box safety to help support the run, something required because of the Raiders problems in the front seven.
It is believed Branch will be an excellent fit in Dennis Allen’s defensive scheme and was immediately mentioned as a top priority for the Raiders.
Undrafted Free Agents Signed:
Mason Brodine, DE – Nebraska-Kearney
Chris Francis, ILB – Baylor
Ben Iamaak, C – Iowa State
Derrick Jones, WR – California (PA)
Ben Gbadyu, OLB, Penn State
Alan Pelc, OG, North Carolina
Sterling Moore, CB – Southern Methodist
Eddie McGee, WR/QB – Illinois
James McCluskey, FB – Boston College
Lou Eliades, OL – Penn State
Zac Etheridge, S – Auburn
Jordan La Secla, QB – San Jose State
Steven Goulet. WR – Ohio
Jamie Cumbie, DT – Clemson
Veteran Free Agents Signed:
Jarvis Moss, DE/LB
Jon Condo, LS
Draft picks signed:
Taiwan Jones – Signing Bonus $405,000
DeMarcus Van Dyke
David Ausberry – Signing Bonus $45,900
Denarius Moore – Signing Bonus $190,500
Per Adam Caplann, Michael Bush is almost certain to return to the Raiders in 2011.
Michael Bush spent his entire first season on the non-football injury list and he wouldn’t have accrued the four seasons necessary to become a free agent.
This conflicts with Jerry McDonald’s report that his first season would count and he would become a free agent if the new rules allow players with four seasons to become free agents.
I trust Jerry McDonald, but I have heard if the rules remained the same under the new collective bargaining agreement he would not become a free agent. There is also the possiblity this provision could be changed in the new labor deal.