According to numerous sources the Carolina Panthers will use their 2011 franchise tag to retain Pro Bowl center Ryan Kalil. The decision was really only between three players- RB DeAngelo Williams (who was narrowed out earlier in the week), DE Charles Johnson and Kalil. I assumed that Johnson would get the franchise tag, but ultimately the Panthers made a point about who they are most concerned in losing via free agency (if it happens this year).
Centers last a very long time in the NFL and a good one is hard to come by. I can't say I blame the Panthers for choosing Kalil who has been reliable since entering the league in 2007 along with 1st round standout Jon Beason. The franchise tag will pay Kalil $10.1 million provided both sides can't work out a long term extension, and should satiate those afraid of the Panthers being 'cheap' again with Kalil's tag costing the Panthers almost $1 million more than would have been required to tag DeAngelo Williams.
Kalil is just 25 and bar any serious injury could potentially have another 10 years left at the center position. What do you think? Was this the right choice?