Jacksonville Jaguars tight end Julius Thomas will likely be back for the team following a big multi-million dollar payment to him after the Super Bowl.
While the conversations around Julius Thomas and his place with the Jacksonville Jaguars continue, the Jags have reaffirmed their commitment to the pass-catching tight end by giving him money he was due following the 2017 Super Bowl.
Michael David Smith of Pro Football Talk called the three million dollars that Thomas is due for being on the roster five days after the Super Bowl a commitment to the tight end. This is at least partly true, suggesting that with more money given to Thomas, the less likely the Jags are to cut him.
But that three million isn’t so cost prohibitive that if the Jags do find a better option or an option for the future that the team would be shy of moving on. The Jags have money to burn at this point and keeping Thomas around for now is an easy calculation.
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For now, however, all signs point to Thomas still being with the team for 2017. He will be due seven million dollars for the season if he manages to stick with the Jags. For most Jags fans, this is anticlimactic. The team needs a pass-catching tight end to be successful and Thomas is still one of the most talented players in that role in the NFL.
The real question for the Jaguars is: How can Thomas be better integrated into the offense? With just 736 yards and nine touchdowns over two seasons, Thomas is not nearly as productive as he was with the Denver Broncos before coming to Jacksonville.
Offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett will have to work to get Thomas more involved if the Jags hope to have gain an adequate return on their high-priced tight end.