Mankins is one of the 10 named plaintiffs in the case against the NFL. As such, his agent, Frank Bauer, has requested that Mankins either become an unrestricted free agent or receive $10 million as part of the settlement, according to Yahoo Sports, which cited multiple unnamed sources. Bauer could not be reached for comment by NESN or Yahoo Sports.
The Patriots placed the franchise tag on Mankins prior to the lockout, although there is no guarantee the tag will hold up after the NFL reaches its new collective-bargaining agreement, which is expected to be approved this week.
Once the language of the CBA is agreed upon, there will be three procedural steps to finalize the settlement. The NFL's 32 player representatives will discuss the deal Wednesday in Washington, D.C., before handing it over to the 10 plaintiffs, who must sign off on it. Then, the owners will need 24 favorable votes Thursday in Atlanta.
Mankins isn't the only one who is reportedly making a last-minute stink. Chargers wide receiver Vincent Jackson has made a similar request, according to Yahoo Sports. Also, Colts quarterback Peyton Manning and Saints quarterback Drew Brees are requesting to be exempt from the franchise tag, according to the Boston Globe.
Patriots quarterback Tom Brady and the other five plaintiffs — free agent linebacker Ben Leber, free agent defensive end Brian Robison, Giants defensive end Osi Umenyiora, Broncos rookie linebacker Von Miller and retired linebacker Mike Vrabel – have not made any specific demands for compensation, according to Yahoo Sports.
There is precedent for Mankins, Jackson, Manning and Brees. As part of the settlement for the antitrust case in 1993, all of the named plaintiffs were exempt from the franchise tag throughout their careers.