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Published: Sun, February 05, 2017
Science | By Carlton Santiago

Eric Berry says he 'definitely' won't play under Chiefs tag in 2017

Eric Berry says he 'definitely' won't play under Chiefs tag in 2017

Berry played 2016 under the $10.8 million franchise tag, but because he and the Chiefs couldn't come to a long-term deal he didn't report to camp until August 28.

Eric Berry said on a NFL Network show that he "doesn't feel comfortable playing under the franchise tag this year".

I want to let everyone know of the key date here: March 1. I want to play there.

"I'll always love Kansas City, I'll always love the fans", Berry said. I really look at them more than teammates. They supported me a lot, and that organization.

"I'm definitely not going to play under the franchise tag this year", Berry said on the show. The Chiefs five-time Pro Bowl safety recorded 77 tackles, three tackles for a loss, one forced fumble, nine passes defended, four interceptions, and scored two defensive touchdowns during the regular season, and added seven more tackles and interception in the team's divisional-round loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers.

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If the Chiefs tagged the 28-year-old safety for a second time, his salary cap number jumps to nearly $13 million.

Both sides are working hard on a getting a deal done to avoid a messy holdout.

Berry wasn't ready to take such a drastic step last offseason, when he skipped organized team activities but returned a few weeks into training camp.

A long-term deal with Berry also allows the Chiefs significant short-term salary cap relief. The franchise tag could be more valuable to the team with Poe, if a long-term deal with Berry comes to fruition. He's one of the best safeties in the league, if not the best. We've been through a lot.

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