Jaguars agree to 3-year contract with Evan Engram: 3 takeaways

The Jacksonville Jaguars have agreed to a contract extension with tight end Evan Engram. Here are three takeaways from the Jags' decision to lock up one of their offensive stars.

Jacksonville Jaguars tight end Evan Engram (17) signals a first down after an early fourth quarter.
Jacksonville Jaguars tight end Evan Engram (17) signals a first down after an early fourth quarter. / Bob Self/Florida Times-Union / USA TODAY
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1. After securing Evan Engram, the Jaguars can address the pass rush

Giving Evan Engram a multi-year contract not only ensure their star tight end remains in Jacksonville for the next three seasons but it also freed up cap space. See, teams can get creative when arranging a structuring deal and if he had played under the tag, he would have counted $11.345 million against the cap in 2023. But by giving him a long-term arrangement, they can push some of his salary into future years.

As Demetrius Harvey of The Florida Times Union reported, Engram is slated to have a cap hit of $5 million next season after signing his contract, which gives the Jags an additional $6.345 million to spend on top of the $12.69 million they had for a total of $20.2 million in space.

With the extra cap room, the Jags can now bolster other position groups. More specifically, they can upgrade their pass rush by signing veteran defensive end Justin Houston or a familiar face in Yannick Ngakoue. Both players remain unsigned and looking for a new team.

Houston is still going strong and can thrive in a rotational role. On the other hand, Ngakoue can give the Jaguars a bigger boost but he will command a higher salary. Also, it's uncertain if he would feel comfortable joining Jacksonville's rotation instead of having a key role. Another option could be Melvin Ingram, who is also available.

Head coach Doug Pederson says he wants to see what the team's young players can do before considering outside options but fortifying their pass rush and adding depth to their defensive front would ensure the defense is in great shape in 2023.

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