Would the Jacksonville Jaguars front office consider giving any player on their current roster a 10-year deal to make him a cornerstone of the team?
While reading the news about Patrick Mahomes and the $477M dollar deal the Kansas City Chiefs quarterback received this week, I immediately wondered out loud if there were any members of the Jacksonville Jaguars roster worthy of such a large deal?
It took me a few minutes to gather the fact it won’t happen here in North Florida. It also made me realize that Gardner Minshew, should he continue to show improvement this season and next will be a bargain for this organization until he and his agent sit at the table with the Jaguars front office to discuss his second contract in the NFL.
I’m not crazy to make comparisons between Minshew and Mahomes. But I do know many Jacksonville Jaguars fans have said this team passed the Chiefs leader and Deshaun Watson to grab Leonard Fournette instead.
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While the running back helped lead this team to the 2017 playoffs, both Mahomes and Watson have passed him by in terms of importance to an organization.
The only player who may have come close to a mega-contract with the Jaguars is Jalen Ramsey. That ship has sailed as the former Jacksonville cornerback is now on the left coast and his contract situation is now a reality for the Los Angeles Rams.
For the sake of this article, let’s have some fun with the Jacksonville Jaguars current roster and coming up with players who are worthy of a 10-year contract.
There isn’t a price tag for these players given the NFL market is going to continue to change with Dak Prescott and Watson on the list of players who want to get paid like Mahomes, but have not reached the apex Kansas City’s Super Bowl-winning signal-caller has achieved.
Of course, we will start at quarterback. When Gardner Minshew as drafted and signed his rookie deal, he wasn’t expected to become the starter at any time last season. Yes, things have changed.
Per spotrac.com, Minshew signed a 4-year, $2,710,884 contract. This season he is expected to make a base salary of $675,000. By any means, this is a great deal for the Jaguars as they have their QB under contract for the next three seasons.
Should Minshew continue to excel and the Jacksonville Jaguars offense grow under coordinator Jay Gruden, the negotiations between the team and the player could get interesting. Jaguars fans would be elated if Minshew develops into the best quarterback the team has ever had and the front office locks him up for the next 10 seasons.
The 21 touchdowns and 3,271 yards were impressive under unique circumstances last season. New, Jaguars fans hope he can improve from this launchpad. The Jaguars need Minshew to continue on the path is travels. He will make this offense better in 2020.
Defensive ends command plenty of money in the NFL. We see how the negotiations between Yannick Ngakoue and the Jaguars have fizzled and the pass rusher is still seeking a trade. The snail’s pace in making that happen will more than likely keep Ngakoue here for another season.
Josh Allen burst on the scene and had 10.5 sacks, went to the Pro Bowl and he did just about everything the Jacksonville Jaguars coaching staff asked of him in his rookie year. And what is scary about that is he has the potential to get even better in Year 2 and beyond.
Allen could become the defensive stalwart the Jaguars need. He could also become the defensive face of this franchise – which is something the team needs. I could see the Jaguars negotiating a new deal in Year 3 of his rookie contract. Whether that could become a decade deal really depends on what the front office plans for the future and how dominant a pass rusher Allen becomes this season and next.
The leap DJ Chark took from Year 1 to Year 2 might be the biggest leap he takes in his NFL career. Believe it or not, that’s fine. The wide receiver showed he could be a very good pass catcher in the league, with a chance to grow and become a top 10 talent.
You also expect his play to improve along with Minshew as the two could form the best QB/WR duo in the AFC South.
Chark’s size and speed as such an asset for the Jaguars. And with the additions the team made to the offense this offseason, the former LSU star should have an impactful season for the Jaguars this season as well.
Wide receivers usually don’t get paid like quarterbacks or defensive ends, but their value to their football teams is just as important because finding an over-the-top No. 1 pass-catcher is rare. Should Chark continue to reach Jimmy Smith-levels of success, then a long-term deal after this season is one of the top goals of the Jaguars.
Before reading this and thinking that I’m a little crazy, hear me out.
Jawaan Taylor played every single snap last year as a rookie right tackle. He stepped into a situation with an offensive line that was average at best last season. Although he is still learning on the job, he was very consistent and by my account, the best lineman the Jaguars had last season.
We put such a premium on the left tackle position, but in this case, Taylor is the one player you want to keep here in Jacksonville for the next decade.
There will be some change with the offensive line in 2021. As long as the front office continues to build the wall to protect Minshew, Taylor must be the player they build around. When he and the team negotiate a new deal in 2021, his resume may be such that he deserves a long-term contract.
Taylor is a cornerstone player who should be part of this organization’s plans moving forward.