Jaguars free agency: Marvin Jones rounds out wide receiver corps
The Jacksonville Jaguars have mainly focused on upgrading their defense this offseason. However, they haven’t neglected the offensive side of the ball and have added Marvin Jones Jr. to an already talented wide receiver corps.
The Jags agreed to a two-year $14.5 million deal with Jones, per Adam Schefter of ESPN. He played for Jaguars offensive coordinator Darell Bevell the past two years in Detroit. During that span, the California standout hauled in 138 receptions for 1,757 yards and 18 touchdowns.
A fifth-round selection by the Cincinnati Bengals in 2012, Jones spent the first three years (he missed the 2014 season with an ankle injury) of his NFL career in Cincy before signing a five-year $40 million contract with the Lions in 2016. Over his eight-year career, he has caught 423 passes for 6,025 yards and 51 touchdowns. Also, he averaged 14.9 yards per reception during his stint with the Lions.
How does Marvin Jones’ addition impact the Jacksonville Jaguars?
You could argue there were better wide receivers available in the open market. However, the Jaguars’ decision to go with Jones was a smart one. Besides the fact they didn’t have to break the bank to get him, his familiarity with Bevell should help him have an immediate impact on offense.
Another reason why singing Jones was smart was that wide receiver wasn’t a pressing need for the Jaguars heading into free agency. After all, they already have a couple of studs in Laviska Shenault Jr. and DJ Chark Jr., so it didn’t make much financial sense to invest in the position in the open market.
The Jags can still sign another one in the second-wave of free agency or draft one in the selection meeting. However, they can now address other position groups without having to worry about upgrading their wide receiver unit.
Also, not overspending at wide receiver will allow the Jaguars to offer Chark an offer a contract extension. Although the case can be made Jacksonville may be better off paying him until next offseason, they have the cap freedom to do it whenever they want.
The Jaguars still have work to do this offseason, adding a playmaker to their tight end room should be next on their checklist. However, the addition of Jones to the wide receiver unit ensures their next franchise quarterback has enough weapons to put some points on the scoreboard and win some football games.