3 Jaguars players who shouldn't be back next year (but probably will be)

• These 3 Jaguars players should get their walking papers but will probably be back next season.

Jacksonville Jaguars defensive tackle Folorunso Fatukasi (94) runs onto the field carrying the U.S.
Jacksonville Jaguars defensive tackle Folorunso Fatukasi (94) runs onto the field carrying the U.S. / Bob Self/Florida Times-Union / USA TODAY
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1. Brandon Scherff, right guard

Let's preface this by saying that players are worth what a team is willing to pay them, and if a signing doesn't work out, clubs should shoulder some of the blame. With that said, the Jaguars surely expected more bang for their buck when they inked Brandon Scherff to a three-year, $45 million deal in 2022.

The biggest concern surrounding the acquisition was that the former Iowa Hawkey hadn't played a full season since 2016. However, he's managed to stay healthy in Jacksonville and make 34 straight starts. On the other hand, his play hasn't been proportional to his salary. A first-round pick in 2015, Scherff made five Pro Bowls and earned a First-Team All-Pro designation during his seven-year stint with the Washington Commanders. He hasn't been nearly as dominant with the Jags.

Scheff dealt with an abdomen injury that hindered his performance in 2022. It was fair to believe that he would regain form if he managed to stay healthy last year. He did but wasn't able to regain his Pro Bowl level. Now, he's entering the last year of his contract and is set to have a massive cap hit of $23.9 million.

Moving on from Scherff would free up $9 million in space. It would also leave $14 million in dead money but the savings would be enough to warrant his potential release. On the other hand, the veteran guard has been named captain in back-to-back seasons and the team's brass may want to have continuity in the offensive trenches, especially if they make changes to the left guard and center positions.

All things considered, it would make more sense to look for a cheaper alternative at right guard but general manager Trent Baalke may refuse to give the interior offensive line a full makeover. This is why it's reasonable to expect Brandon Scherff to return in 2024 even though the Jags would be better off parting ways with him.

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