The Jacksonville Jaguars have been brought up as a potential landing spot for Minnesota Vikings defensive end Danielle Hunter since the offseason. However, a trade doesn't seem likely to happen in light of a recent report.
Jeremy Fowler of ESPN reports the Vikes aren't exploring the idea of moving Hunter before this year's deadline, noting that they "gauged interest in the offseason" before they re-signed him. However, they're not planning on moving him despite the fact that there has been external interest. Fowler goes on to say that the sense is "it would take a sizable deal to pry him."
Hunter has been seen as a potential trade target for the Jags since the offseason. He even started following them on Instagram during a contract impasse with the Vikings. Even after agreeing to a new deal on July 30, he still has popped up as a potential trade candidate in recent weeks. In fact, Darren Wolfson of KSTP said not long ago that Jacksonville had shown interest in Hunter.
However, it's hard to see the Jaguars landing Hunter before the October 31st deadline, especially if the Vikings are asking something along the lines of a first-round pick. Maybe the Jaguars would be willing to part with a third and a fourth but anything more may be a bit too much.
The Jaguars can do without Danielle Hunter, with Josh Allen having a career year
As much as Danielle Hunter would improve the Jacksonville Jaguars' pass rush, having outside linebacker Josh Allen in the mix decreases the need for outside reinforcements. Although the Jags are still waiting on Travon Walker and K'Lavon Chaisson, Allen is playing at an elite level. Against the New Orleans Saints, he racked up 10 total pressures and posted a win rate of 36.8 percent.
Allen had the Jaguars' lone sack of Thursday Night Football, giving him eight for the season. At this pace, he should be able to break the personal best of 10.5 he set as a rookie in 2019. Similarly, he should secure a contract extension that reflects his status as one of the best edge rushers in the league sooner rather than later.
Make no mistake, the Jaguars still have to find a bookend pass rusher for Allen but they can afford to pass on Hunter. Travon Walker is still a work in progress and K'Lavon Chaisson will probably walk in 2024 but Jacksonville will soon get defensive end DaVon Hamilton back.
Hamilton, who was expected to have a breakout year, suffered a non-football back injury in the preseason. He began the 2023 season on Injured Reserve and recently resumed practicing. He popped on the injury report as a full participant on the days before the Saints game. Although he ended up missing the bout, there's a chance he will be available against the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 8. If that's the case, the pass rush would then get a boost.
Trading for a player of Danielle Hunter's caliber would be huge for the Jacksonville Jaguars. However, they've shown the ability to bring the heat, so they should be fine without him.