Which team will jump to the front of the line to make an offer for Jacksonville Jaguars pass rusher Yannick Ngakoue?
Let the games begin here in Jacksonville. As the team has announced it has placed the franchise tag on defensive end Yannick Ngakoue, watch for stories that make a case for many NFL teams that should call on the Jaguars to acquire the pass rusher’s services.
This is going to be fun and chaotic over the next few weeks. As NFL free agency is about to explode and the NFL Draft is just six weeks away, it seems like the league is still on 5-Hour Energy, not stopping to take a rest.
Not even in the midst of a world pandemic.
“The Jaguars placed the NFL’s non-exclusive franchise tag on Ngakoue, meaning he can negotiate and sign with another team. The Jaguars would have the right to match the offer; if the Jaguars did not match the offer in that scenario, they would receive two first-round draft selections from the team that signed Ngakoue,” writes Jaguars senior writer John Oehser.
“If Ngakoue signs the franchise tag, he will play for the Jaguars next season on a one-year contract based on the average of the top NFL defensive end salaries over the past five seasons. If he opts not to sign the tag, he will not play for any NFL team.”
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It’s as simple as that. Well, maybe not. We shall find out which teams are willing to take that kind of gamble, potentially working out a deal to give Jacksonville more riches in terms of draft capital – which is something the franchise has worked to accrue this past season and offseason.
“If Ngakoue signs the tag, he and the Jaguars can continue to negotiate a long-term contract,” Oehser adds.
One team that figures to be heavily in pursuit of Ngakoue is the Buffalo Bills, as different stories have surfaced on FanSided.com and other sports sites. Brandon Croce of buffalowdown.com believes the Jaguars are one of three teams the Bills make a deal with. in the first round in April.
Such a move would bolster the Buffalo defense while it allows the Bills to swap first-round picks with Jacksonville. The team already owns the 9th and 20th selections (by virtue of a trade with the Los Angeles Rams for Jalen Ramsey). Jacksonville also has 10 picks overall over the seven-round selection process.
“The Bills would want to make the jump once again to get ahead of the Eagles if there is a wide receiver they really want,” Croce writes.
“Meanwhile for the Jaguars, they are a team that seems to be in rebuild mode and would be interested in additional draft capital. It also would likely not cost the Bills too much of their draft capital to move up and with multiple fifth and sixth-round picks, one or two of those may be enough.”
There could also be a scenario where the Bills use the chance to grab Ngakoue as well, with team general manager Brandon Beane offering the 22nd overall pick, plus a second or third-round pick for the Jaguars 20th selection and the edge rusher.