The Jaguars and starting left guard Andrew Norwell have agreed to a restructured 2020 salary, according to Field Yates of ESPN. Norwell, who was due $11.5 million non-guaranteed money in '20, will now have $9 million guaranteed and will be able to earn the other $2.5 million based on incentives. The restructured salary will initially save the Jaguars $2.5 million against the cap in 2020.
This move indicates a couple of things. The Jaguars are rolling with Norwell at left guard in 2020. Norwell hasn't lived up to the market-setting deal the Jaguars signed him to before the 2018 season. After allowing just 15 total pressures and ZERO sacks in his final year with the Panthers, Norwell has regressed quite a bit. In 2019, he allowed 28 pressures, three sacks, and picked up eight penalties. None of those numbers are terrible, but they're certainly not worthy of an upper-echelon contract. But the Jaguars are confident in Norwell heading into 2020. He's battled through injuries during his time in Jacksonville, so they might believe at full strength that Norwell could get closer to his 2017 level of play.
The Jaguars also have a potential out after 2020, which they'll likely use unless Norwell's play vastly improves this upcoming season. The Jaguars would save $9 million against the cap by moving on from Norwell following the 2020 season. Norwell is 28 years old — 2021 will be his year 30 season.
Ben Bartch, the Jaguars' first selection on day three of the 2020 NFL Draft, could be groomed to replace Norwell in 2021. Bartch played left tackle in college, but the Jaguars will put him at guard to start his career. If he progresses nicely, he could be the heir apparent to at left guard heading into his sophomore season in the NFL.
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