FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – The New England Patriots announced that they are utilizing the franchise designation on offensive lineman Joe Thuney.
The Patriots issued the following statement on the use of the franchise tag on Thuney: "Joe has been a model teammate and an essential element to our success since joining our team in 2016. Utilizing the franchise designation allows both sides more time to try to reach the goal of a long-term agreement."
Thuney, 27, was originally drafted by the Patriots in the third round (78th overall) of the 2016 NFL Draft out of North Carolina State. The 6-foot-5, 308-pounder has started all 64 regular-season games and all 10 postseason contests at left guard during his four-year career for New England. He became the first player in NFL history to start in the Super Bowl in each of his first three seasons in the NFL, starting at left guard in Super Bowls LI, LII and LIII.
Last season, Thuney started all 16 regular-season games and the AFC Wild Card Playoff vs. Tennessee at left guard. The two-time Super Bowl champion was named a member of the Associated Press All-Pro Second Team for his performance in 2019, his first career All-Pro accolade.