5 contract extension candidates the Jaguars must lock up now

Jacksonville Jaguars fans, 2021 NFL Draft (Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports)
Jacksonville Jaguars fans, 2021 NFL Draft (Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports) /
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The Jacksonville Jaguars currently find themselves at the top of the AFC South. While they will need to keep winning to remain there, there’s no doubt they’re much better than they were last year.

While Trevor Lawrence’s improved play has certainly played a role in the turnaround, he’s not the only player that has contributed to the Jaguars’ 1-1 record. With that in mind, here are five players that are deserving of a new contract.

No. 5 Jaguars contract extension candidate: Arden Key, DE

Jacksonville Jaguars defensive end Arden Key (49) at TIAA Bank Field. [Bob Self/Florida Times-Union] /

If there’s something we’ve learned about general manager Trent Baalke, it’s that he likes to acquire defensive linemen. With him at the helm of their front office, the Jaguars signed Roy Robertson-Harris last year, and Folorunso Fatukasi and Arden Key this past offseason.

Baalke has an eye for defensive front talent, so it wasn’t shocking to see the Jags ink Key in free agency. The former LSU Tiger was coming off a career year with the San Francisco 49ers and he’s already picked up where he left off last season.

So far, Key has only played 31 percent of the Jags’ total snaps on defense but he’s already logged a sack and a tackle. Moreover, his flexibility to play across the line of scrimmage gives defensive coordinator Mike Calwell the ability to come up with plays that can create confusion up front.

While it’s hard to envision Key getting 10 sacks in 2022, he’s become an important piece in the Jags’ defensive puzzle, and re-signing him now before his price tag goes up would be a good idea.