The Patriots this evening confirmed they have designated guard Logan Mankins as their franchise player, and released a statement.
The Patriots pointed to the past franchising of Vince Wilfork -- not the other ex-Patriots they later turned loose at some point after using the tag -- and the contract extension the two sides eventually worked out. The quote included in the statement, which wasn't attributed to anyone in the organization, indicated the Patriots would like to do the same with Mankins.
“Logan Mankins is a tremendous player. He has been a fixture on our offensive line since we drafted him in the first round of the 2005 NFL Draft and he remains an important part of our future plans. Unfortunately, we have not been able to reach a long-term agreement, despite many attempts and proposals by both sides. That remains our objective in utilizing the franchise designation and we are hopeful that Logan will be a Patriot for many years to come.”