Jacksonville Jaguars star defensive end Yannick Ngakoue is holding out in hopes of a new deal. In reality, it’s more statement than ploy.
The Jacksonville Jaguars are welcoming their veterans to training camp on Wednesday. Well, most of them.
Fourth-year defensive end Yannick Ngakoue is not reporting as the two sides haven’t agreed on a contract extension. The two sides have not made any significant progress to this point on the topic, and aren’t expected to sign an extension before the end of this season, according to a source. At this juncture, a source with knowledge of the situation believes the Jaguars will use the franchise tag on Ngakoue come the offseason if he’s productive in 2019.
Ngakoue, 24, is entering the final year of his rookie deal and has been one of the more productive pass-rushers over the past three seasons. Originally a third-round pick out of the University fo Maryland, Ngakoue has racked up 29.9 career sacks, including a career-high 12 during his Pro Bowl season of 2017.
The Jaguars are entering camp a bit short-handed, with both Ngakoue and linebacker Telvin Smith missing the season for personal reasons.
Ngakoue isn’t the only star pass-rusher holding out in the AFC South. Jadeveon Clowney has stayed away from all team activities with the Houston Texans, although his situation is more tenuous. Clowney was given the franchise tag by Houston in February and hasn’t signed it, allowing for him to skip cam without being fined. Additionally, Clowney isn’t permitted under league rules to sign a new deal after missing the July 15 deadline.