With the trade of Calais Campbell, the Jaguars are in another rebuild

MIAMI, FLORIDA - DECEMBER 23: Calais Campbell #93 of the Jacksonville Jaguars and teammates take the field for their game against the Miami Dolphins at Hard Rock Stadium on December 23, 2018 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images)
MIAMI, FLORIDA - DECEMBER 23: Calais Campbell #93 of the Jacksonville Jaguars and teammates take the field for their game against the Miami Dolphins at Hard Rock Stadium on December 23, 2018 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images) /
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With the announcement the team was trading defensive end, Calais Campbell, the Jacksonville Jaguars are once again rebuilding a franchise.

I don’t believe in hero worship when it comes to professional athletes, but I have to admit it gets pretty darn close to that with former Jaguars defensive end Calais Campbell. Upon hearing the news the team was trading the reigning NFL Man of the Year to the Baltimore Ravens for a 2020 fifth-round pick was somewhat surprising. Admittedly, I yelled and probably woke the dead.

Campbell was everything to this organization as a player and leader and a strong mentor in the locker room. The move clearly represents a rebuilding process for Jacksonville’s franchise in 2020 and beyond.

The moves the front office has made over the past few weeks tell a take of what to expect this season. Marcell Dareus gone. A.J. Bouye gone. Yannick Ngakoue was given the franchise tag with the potential intent to trade the defensive end.

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I told a sportscaster down in South Florida the only way I saw the moves the Jaguars made this offseason as a fire sale is if No. 93 was on the trading block.

Guess what just happened? And for about an hour, I forgot all about my responsibilities as a writer and only thought of myself as a fan – someone who just got punched in the gut. I and many fans in Jacksonville are trying to catch their collective breaths.

"“Campbell is due to make $15 million with a cap figure of $17.5 million in the final year of the four-year, $60 million contract he signed in March 2017. The trade will become official when the new league year begins Wednesday,” Michael DiRocco of ESPN.com wrote.“Campbell will go down as the best free-agent signing in Jaguars history; he signed for $30 million guaranteed. Campbell had 31.5 sacks in 48 games and made the Pro Bowl three times in three seasons with the Jaguars.”"

If you want to know what the heart of soul of the Jaguars roster, look no further than the former second-round draft pick of the Arizona Cardinals in 2008. From the moment he signed his contract with the team, Campbell has been the leader of this team. He was also one of the main reasons the Jaguars made their improbable run to the AFC Championship in 2017. Players played better around him.

The Jaguars are once again building for free agency and the NFL Draft as another $15M will come off the books once the deal is made official on Wednesday. The team will have somewhere in the neighborhood of $48M in cap space with more moves potentially in play.

Jacksonville now has 11 picks in the NFL Draft in April.

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