NEW YORK — Nick Folk kicked his way to a big pay raise with the New York Jets.
The Jets placed the franchise tag on the reliable kicker Friday after he had perhaps the best season of his seven-year NFL career.
Folk made $780,000 last season, but the franchise tag estimate for kickers is about $3.4 million for this season. Folk was scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent and by using the tag, the Jets could potentially set things up for a multiyear deal — which it is believed Folk is seeking.
Teams have until Monday to designate a player for the franchise tag, which allows a team to retain the rights to a scheduled unrestricted free agent. It's the first time since 2011 that the Jets used the tag, when linebacker David Harris was franchised.
In his fourth season with the Jets, Folk made 33 of 36 field-goal attempts, including three winning kicks. He broke the franchise records for most consecutive field goals from the start of a season (23) and most consecutive home field goals (20). Folk also had a career-high 30 touchbacks on his kickoffs.
After spending his first three seasons with Dallas, Folk has established himself as a clutch kicker for the Jets, with coach Rex Ryan playfully referring to him as "Folk Hero."
Folk has repeatedly won training camp kicking competitions with the Jets, beating out Nick Novak, Josh Brown, Billy Cundiff and Dan Carpenter, among others, the last few summers.
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