2. The Jaguars fit the description of the team Zach Ertz wants to join
One of the reasons Ertz requested his release from the Arizona Cardinals was that he wanted to play for a contender, and it's easy to see why. He's approaching the twilight of his career and likely wants to finish on a strong note. The Cards won't give them that chance since they're currently in rebuild mode. Meanwhile, the Jags are one of a handful of teams that fit the bill.
In the worst-case scenario, Jacksonville will win the AFC South and qualify for the playoffs. Best case? They'll clinch a BYE in the postseason. It's true that he was on Injured Reserve before his release but it's possible that Arizona didn't activate him was that fellow tight end Trey McBride performed well in his absence.
Either way, Ertz still has a bit of gas in the tank and would be a solid depth addition for the Jags. Speaking of...
1. Zach Ertz would be a solid depth piece at tight end
Evan Engram has managed to build off of last year's success. Quickly after joining the Jags, the former Ole Miss Rebel went on to set new career highs for catches and receiver yards. He also broke several team records, including (but not limited to) the most catches by a tight end in a season, and the most receiving yards by a tight end in a single game.
This season, Engram's got 64 receptions for 524 yards, so it's fair to say that losing him to an injury * knocks on wood * would be a huge hit for the offense. Zach Ertz would provide insurance in case Jacksonville were without Engram for a stretch. By knowing Doug Pederson's playbook, Ertz could quickly come in and fill in for Engram.
The case against the Jaguars adding Zach Ertz after his release from the Cardinals
2. Zach Ertz is an uncessary luxury the Jaguars don't need
Tight end is one of the Jaguars' deepest position groups in 2023. They even had to waive Gerrit Prince before the start of the season because there was no room for him in Jacksonville. Things haven't been changed much since then. Evan Engram remains at the top of the depth chart but Luke Farrell and rookie Brenton Strange have also seen the field often.
Engram has a 21 percent target share on offense this season, only second to Christian Kirk. This is why Strange and Farrell have a combined 15 catches for 145 receiving yards between the two. Simply, there aren't enough targets for everyone, and that includes Ertz, who wouldn't get much playing time if he were to land in Jacksonville.
1. Zach Ertz would hinder Brenton Strange's development
The Jaguars applied the franchise tag on Evan Engram before the start of free agency. They eventually struck a three-year deal worth $41 million, so he won't be going anywhere anytime soon. Still, the team's brass chose to use a second-round pick on Brenton Strange in this year's draft.
With Engram firmly entrenched as the starter, Strange hasn't gotten lots of playing time but that doesn't mean that drafting him wasn't a bad decision. In fact, having Engram in the fold allows Strange to learn the nuances of the position without having to be pressed into action.
By adding Ertz, the Jaguars could potentially hinder Strange's development. The veteran tight end would be getting reps that would otherwise go to his rookie counterpart, and if the Jags kept Ertz behind Strange on the depth chart, signing him wouldn't then make sense.
The bottom line is that Zach Ertz could help several teams in need of tight-end help. However, the Jacksonville Jaguars aren't one of them and may be better off passing on the veteran.