The Yannick Ngakoue saga rolls on. The Jaguars have yet to trade the disgruntled young pass rusher, despite his best efforts on Twitter to force their hand.
The reason a deal has not yet been struck? According to Jordan Ranaan of ESPN, the Jaguars are "beginning discussions for Ngakoue at a first-round pick and more."
At such a steep asking price, it's no wonder the Jaguars are being patient, waiting for the right deal. It should come as no surprise, either. When Jalen Ramsey demanded a trade during the 2019 season, the Jaguars waited weeks to deal their star cornerback. And it paid off in the form of two first-round picks and a fourth-rounder.
Just weeks ago, the Jaguars went through the same process with Nick Foles. Instead of taking a raw deal just to be rid of Foles, the Jaguars played hardball and ended up receiving a fourth-round pick for the former Super Bowl MVP.
Dave Caldwell and the Jaguars' front office aren't going to let go of Ngakoue for pennies on the dollar. And why would they? The team has all the leverage. They can force Ngakoue to either play for them or not play at all in 2020 and 2021. With control of Ngakoue's rights for the next two seasons, the Jaguars should feel comfortable waiting for the right deal to come along.
And there are plenty of rumored suitors. The Jets, Giants, Packers, Eagles, and Seahawks have all been linked to Ngakoue. Which team will give up the most? Time will tell. But Yannick Ngakoue's unique ability to create pressure and force turnovers is at a premium in today's NFL.
If the Jaguars want to get rid of Ngakoue this offseason, doing so before the NFL Draft on April 23rd would likely be the most beneficial route. That way, they'd be able to add draft capital that could turn into a potential impact rookie. And if they can't get a deal done before the draft, they'll need to do so (again, if the Jags want to trade him this offseason) before July 15th. That's the deadline to sign players under the franchise tag to a new long-term deal.
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