3 reasons the Jaguars must go after edge rusher Justin Houston, 2 they should pass

• The Jaguars pass rush could use a boost

• OLB Justin Houston is currrently available

• Here's the case for and against going after him

Oct 29, 2023; Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; Carolina Panthers linebacker Justin Houston (50)
Oct 29, 2023; Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; Carolina Panthers linebacker Justin Houston (50) / Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports
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3. The pass rush remains a need for the Jaguars

Josh Allen is among the best pass rushers in the league and Travon Walker has developed into a dependable booking pass rusher. However, they need a No. 3 that can spell Allen and Walker from time to time and let them catch their breath. Former first-round pick K'Lavon Chaisson had two sacks early in the season but has otherwise been a non-factor for most of 2023. The same is true for Dawuane Smoot.

Smoot started the 2023 season recovering from a torn Achilles he suffered last year. He was back with the team in Week 6. However, he may not fully hit his stride until 2024. So far, Smoot has only registered one sack and is coming off an uninspiring performance — two total pressures, two missed tackles — against the Baltimore Ravens. Houston would give that third rusher the Jags need behind Travon Walker and Josh Allen.

2. It wouldn't be cost-prohibitive to sign Houston

Justin Houston signed a one-year deal worth $6 million with the Panthers before the 2023 season began. His signing bonus was $4.835 million, which was paid at the moment he put his signature on the dotted line.

Teams interested in his services would only be on the hook for what's left of his salary this season, $194,000, a rather affordable amount. The fact that there are no guarantees in Houston's contract would make him a low-risk, high-reward move.

1. This may be the last time the Jaguars can bolster their pass rush before the playoffs

Most pass rushers have found a home, and the trade deadline has come and gone. Just last week, the Miami Dolphins signed Melvin Ingram. Without any other viable options, adding Justin Houston to the mix may be the last chance the Jags have to bolster their pass rush this season. With that said, here are two reasons the Jags should not claim Houston.