According to a report from the New York Daily News, the New York Jets have reached out to the Jaguars regarding the availability of defensive end Dante Fowler Jr. via trade.
The Jets being interested in Fowler certainly makes sense on a certain level. The 24 year old rotational pass rusher was able to rack up 10 sacks in 2017 (including the playoffs) despite not being a full time starter. In week four the Jets saw first hand what he was capable of when he recorded 3 tackles, a sack, and a forced fumble against the Jets at MetLife Stadium. He would immediately be the most talented edge player on the Jets roster and could certainly inject some juice into their pass rush.
On the other hand a trade for Dante Fowler Jr. might not make a ton of sense. This is the final year of his contract and he is set to be an unrestricted free agent following this season. Why trade for him now when you could get him on the open market next season? Then there's also the litany of off-field issues that Fowler has dealt with since entering the league as the third overall pick in the 2015 NFL Draft. And the fact that he's suspended for the first week of the season and recovering from a shoulder injury shouldn't exactly inspire confidence that he'll be a difference maker early on in 2018.
It really all comes down to what the Jets would be willing to offer. If they were willing to give up a second round pick for the embattled pass rusher the Jaguars would certainly have to take a long look at dealing Fowler, but anything less might not be worth it. The Jaguars best chance at a Super Bowl in 2018 is with Fowler on the roster, even if he and fellow pass rusher Yannick Ngakoue don't see eye to eye. You also have to factor in that the Jaguars would likely get a compensatory pick if Fowler does in fact walk in free agency next year.
It seems unlikely that a deal would get done at this point. Fowler has too much baggage for a team to offer a premium pick for him, yet he provides too much value for the Jaguars in the short term to give him up for anything less than a third round pick.
Some will propose that the Jaguars should trade Dante Fowler Jr. for Teddy Bridgewater, who the Jets appear ready to trade, but that scenario seems unlikely. The Jaguars signed Blake Bortles to an extension this offseason and had the chance to sign Teddy Bridgewater on the open market. Why trade for a guy that you didn't want to sign when he was a free agent?
What do you think? Should the Jaguars try to trade Dante Fowler Jr.?
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