As the Jaguars get set to try to win their first game of the season on Thursday night against rival Tennessee, the dominant story line will be about DB Jalen Ramsey and his status with the team. Further and most importantly, if the team does indeed intend to trade him as soon as Friday, why is he even playing in the game?
As for that, we wrote yesterday that Ramsey is still on the Jaguars roster and expected to not only be active, but start in tonight’s game. This despite numerous reports since Sunday, that he wants to be traded, and the team is actively shopping him to the first takeer that will give them at least one number one pick in return.
Importantly, the front office has not denied that they’re trying to move the disgruntled former Pro Bowl corner, you can only take that to mean: they are trying to pull off a trade.
So it raises the very valid dilemma of: playing arguably your best player in the third game of the year, but also the realistic possibility that Ramsey could somehow hurt himself in the game. And while a serious injury isn’t likely, something slight like a groin or hamstring injury could come from playing in this game.
Another very valid point is that if the Jaguars could not make a trade in the last 48 hours or so for Ramsey, are they really going to get more value by trading him Friday, this weekend or next Monday?
So, here we go with the team taking what appears to be an unnecessary risk with a player who obviously privately has made it clear he wants out of North Florida.
Of course the other possible part of this is; the VP of football Tom Coughlin is willing to “play poker,” for now, with the other teams in the league that are pursuing Ramsey and might even wait another week or two before pulling the trigger.
After all the Jaguars have until October trading deadline to find the best deal possible.
However, the argument against that is that Ramsey could become a bigger distraction than what he already has and cause more problems than he already has behind the scenes for the team.
It certainly is a dilemma.
And it’s one that will play out Thursday on National TV, if and when Ramsey is out there running around, while the team is trying to deal him somewhere else, maybe as soon as the weekend.
Jaguars to get Nick Foles back to practice
The Jaguars are in need of some positive news and it looks like they have some regarding injured quarterback Nick Foles.
Foles, who’s been out since an injury in game one, will apparently be back at practice starting next week
Coach Doug Marrone told the media Friday that their prized free agent acquisition is anxious to get back:
Jaguars coach Doug Marrone says he thinks QB Nick Foles will be able to return to practice on Wednesday, which keeps Foles on track for a potential return on Nov. 17. Foles has been our since Week 1 with a broken collarbone. https://t.co/w1byEk6jmi
— Michael DiRocco (@ESPNdirocco) October 18, 2019
Foles was injured in the first quarter of the Jaguars opening game with the Kansas City Chiefs suffering a fractured left collarbone. And, the team has been aiming for him to be back at some point in the middle of the season.
ESPN’s Jaguars beat reporter Mike DiRocco’s tweet references that it apparently be the November 17th game with the Colts, as the goal.
In Foles is absence, Jacksonville has turned rookie 6th round pick Gardner Minshew. Minshew has become somewhat of a cult phenomenon in North Florida leading Jacksonville to a couple of wins including a dramatic last-second victory in week four in Denver. The team further embraced Minshew by passing out some 30,000 replica mustaches at last week’s home game with the Saints, to like what the rookie sports as part of his image.
Minshew, however, had a tough time with the Saints defense throwing for only 14 of 29 for 163 yards without a TD and an INT. He’s expected to have an easier time with the 0-6 hapless Bengals this Sunday.
Meanwhile, the Jags have optimism that Foles will be able to spark them in the second half of the season.
Jacksonville landed Foles in free agency this past March of his Super Bowl winning performance two years ago and did so, by guaranteeing him $50 million on a four-year contract. That’s the richest deal that the Jags have never given to a quarterback in their 25-year franchise history.
And, they have hoped all along that his veteran leadership and downfield passing arm will provide their offensive some needed help.
Jaguars VP Coughlin on Ramsey trade- “time came to move on”
The Jaguars have made the decision to part with problem Pro Bowl defensive back Jalen Ramsey and Wednesday morning the team made its first statement about it.
Jacksonville VP of football Tom Coughlin released a statement through the team website and social media about the deal they made with the Rams for the disgruntled Ramsey:
Statement from Executive Vice President of Football Operations Tom Coughlin. pic.twitter.com/W3wdjinyOZ
— #DUUUVAL (@Jaguars) October 16, 2019
As we wrote Tuesday night, Coughlin and Ramsey not seeing eye to eye basically forced a move to be made. However, the Jaguars should be credited, as they waited and got two number one picks, as well as a mid-round pick in return for a player that has previously been an All-Pro at his position.
The soap opera boiled over in week two, when Ramsey got into things on the sidelines with coach Doug Marrone over Marrone not challenging a completion to receiver DeAndre Hopkins, whom Ramsey had been covering.
As we had been told at that time Ramsey and Marrone and cleared the air. However, his bigger problem had been with Coughlin and a meeting they had after the Houston game led Ramsey to demand a trade. This as, Coughlin would ultimately be in charge of approving a long-term contract extension for Ramsey be on this year, and that wasn’t going to be likely.
The Jaguars and the Rams also completed a big trade a year ago when Jacksonville dealt away defensive end and former top five pick, Dante Fowler, for third and fifth round picks in return. Fowler went on to have a good year down the stretch in L.A. and ended up helping them make the Super Bowl.
Ramsey also comes to Hollywood at a bargain in the short term for the Rams, as he is only making the prorated remainder of his $2.4 million salary for this year.
The Rams and GM Les Snead can also decide to keep Ramsey for his fifth year option at $13.7 million for 2020.
And, the Rams cleared some salary-cap room, and at Ramsey’s position, when they traded defensive back Marcus Peters to the Baltimore Ravens earlier on Tuesday. L.A. is in the “win now” mode, and not only did not have a first-round pick this past draft, but also do not have one in the next two drafts after the deal for Ramsey.
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