LaMarr Woodley signs tender

PITTSBURGH -- Linebacker LaMarr Woodley has signed Pittsburgh's one-year franchise tender offer, the Steelers announced on Wednesday.

Woodley becomes the first player to sign a franchise tender. The players' union has questioned the validity of franchise and transition tags with the current collective bargaining agreement set to expire at the end of the day on March 3.

A league source told ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter on Tuesday that Carolina Panthers center Ryan Kalil, who also received a franchise tag, plans to sign his tender as well.

In the final season of his rookie contract, Woodley, 26, made $550,000. But next season, he'll stand to make more than $10 million because of the tag and his position. The Steelers could also sign him to a long-term contract.

Woodley, 26, who just finished his third season with Pittsburgh, had 50 tackles, 10 sacks and two interceptions last season, helping the Steelers to the AFC championship. The former second-round pick out of Michigan has 39 sacks and seven forced fumbles for his career.

In the Steelers' three-game playoff run, Woodley had 10 tackles and three sacks.

A member of the 2010 AFC Pro Bowl squad, Woodley is the only player in NFL history to post at least one sack in six consecutive postseason games. He has 11 sacks total in seven postseason contests, including an NFL record two in each of his first four playoff outings.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.