Matt Prater runs off the field after scoring the game winning field goal in overtime against the Chicago Bearse. (Ron Chenoy-US PRESSWIRE)

Broncos' Matt Prater Could Be Franchised

Broncos kicker Matt Prater could be considered the unsung hero from the 2011 season. His four walk off  game winning kicks were often thrown into the shadow of Tim Tebow’s giant spotlight. That doesn’t mean he’s not worth his weight, however.

In fact once the Broncos salary cap and contract specialist Mike Sullivan starts his job, the team will likely slap the franchise tag on Prater. The Broncos haven’t used their franchise tag since the 2002 season when they put it on kicker Jason Elam.

The good thing about franchise tags is they guarantee the average of the top five salaries at the respective position. The bad thing is they are only one year deals and their values have been reduced since the new CBA was put in place.

Prater made $1.835 million in 2011 as a restricted free agent and he was hoping for some long term security with the team.

“Just because a player is franchised doesn’t mean it can’t be used as leverage to eventually negotiate a long-term deal.” – Mike Klis (Denver Post) 

Prater has been working on year-to-year deals for five seasons.

There are 16 other unrestricted free agents that the Broncos must decide what to do with.

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Tags: Denver Broncos Matt Prater Tim Tebow

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