For the fourth consecutive year, Jaguars left tackle Tony Boselli was denied entry into the Pro Football Hall of Fame after making it to the finalist round.
Although the official word on the five inductees of the Pro Football Hall of Fame voters named will not be until later Saturday night, Boselli reportedly has told multiple people that the Hall of Fame informed him that he not selected during their meeting Saturday in Miami:
Tony Boselli was again passed over for the Pro Football Hall of Fame. https://t.co/5eHN8COEj8
— ActionNewsJax (@ActionNewsJax) February 1, 2020
We had written previously that Boselli has a very compelling case, even with the fact that he did not have an extremely long career.
Bosellli was the first ever Jacksonville draft pick, being taken #2 overall in the 1995 draft. And, from the very beginning, he became one of the cornerstone’s of the franchise. In addition to five straight Pro Bowls, he was given the prestigious All-Pro selection (there’s only one of those each year) three times, as well. Boselli was such a dominant force that he was part of the NFL’s “All Decade Team” of the 90s playing only five seasons in the decade.
Boselli confirmed on social that he had been informed that he had not made it, again this year, later Saturday:
First of all I want to congratulate all the new @ProFootballHOF members. I have no idea who they are but I know they are well deserving. I want to thank @samkouvaris for the great job he has done presenting me. He put a ton of work into it and I appreciate it
— Tony Boselli (@TonyBoselli) February 1, 2020
As for the Hall of Fame and it’s voting, a contemporary of Boselli’s at the left tackle position, Orlando Pace, got into the Hall four years ago.
Pace was a former #1 overall pick by the Rams, and had a longer (13 years) career, but not that much more distinguished, individually. His seven Pro Bowls were more than Boselli’s, but he only equaled Boselli’s three All Pro selections.
Yes, Pace was part of 1999 Super Bowl win and had another appearance in 2001, but it’s not as if Boselli didn’t repeatedly play in and play well in several Jaguar playoff wins in his career. This would include the Jaguars appearance in the 1996 AFC Championship Game.
So, they are comparable. And Pace made it in the Hall in year number two. Boselli has now waited for over twice that long.
Yes, there is an argument that Boselli only played in 107 games over 8 seasons due to chronic shoulder problems late in his career. But the voters put in Broncos RB Terrell Davis two years ago, and he played in only 78 games over 7 seasons due to bad knees. That’s about two seasons less of games played than Boselli played for the Jags.
There are two other offensive linemen, former Seahawks and Vikings Chad Hutchinson and former Steelers Alan Faneca, who were also finalists this year. And likely, one of them were included in the five man “modern era” selections.
Jaguars DE Yannick Ngakoue hinting he’s gone again?
One of the key free-agent questions for the Jaguars continues to be whether or not they’re going to allow their best pass rusher, Yannick Ngakoue, to test the free-agent market coming up? And, once again, the player may be giving a clue that he’s going to do just that.
Ngakoue tweeted Wednesday morning the following phrase, which seems to indicate, yet again, that he will be playing somewhere else in 2020:
— Yannick Ngakoue (@YannickNgakoue) February 26, 2020
This goes along with something that we wrote earlier in January. That’s when just a couple of days after the season Ngakoue posted essentially a goodbye message to Jaguar fans. This came on the heels of him having held out for a new contract for the first few days of training camp last August, but not receiving a new deal during the season, etc.
Ngakoue, whose 37.5 career sacks are the most by a Jaguars player after 63 career games, is sure to be a sought-after player from many different teams. GM Dave Caldwell said at the end of the season when asked about re-sgning his star pass rusher, “He is a tremendous player and even a better person. How he handled his business this year was tremendous. But, I would say that’s priority No. 1, to make sure he comes back to Jacksonville. Hopefully, we can get that done. ″
It’s also worth noting that at Tuesday’s NFL Scouting Combine at media availability in Indianapolis, coach Doug Marrone repeated that he wants Ngakoue to remain in Jaguars teal and white:
Doug Marrone: ‘’No doubt where I stand or the coaches.”
—They want Yannick Ngakoue back. pic.twitter.com/vOorH4hH95
— John Reid (@JohnReid64) February 26, 2020
However, it remains to be seen if Marrone and Caldwell are willing to “pony up” huge money for him or even potentially, put the franchise tag on him before free agency begins next month?
Ngakoue figures to want a contract close to what the top ends are getting paid right now. Demarcus Lawrence and Frank Clark both signed five-year, over $100 million deals in 2019 and received guaranteed money that exceeded $62 million. That is massive for Jacksonville.
If the Jags opt for the “franchise tag,” then the talented end will be making around $19 million dollars, which is the current average of the top five players at his position. The Jaguars could also put the tag on him and then work on a longer term, salary cap friendly, deal that would replace the tag later in the off season.
Jaguars confirm they are declining option on DT Dareus
At Tuesday’s media session at the NFL Scouting Combine, Jaguars GM Dave Caldwell made official what had been rumored for the last couple of days regarding defensive tackle Marcell Dareus: he will not be brought back for a fourth season in Jacksonville.
Caldwell confirmed the Jaguars are not picking up DT Marcell Dareus' option.
— John Reid (@JohnReid64) February 25, 2020
Dareus only played briefly in 2019, as he suffered a core muscle injury that sidelined him after only six games and he was placed on injured reserve. The former number one pick of the Buffalo Bills had played for coach Doug Marrone for a couple of seasons in Western New York.
Marrone and Caldwell traded for Dareus during the 2017 season and he helped them with their rise to the AFC South title and two playoff wins. This included Darius registering two sacks and four other tackles-for-loss in the Jaguars three playoff games that year.
Dareus made the Pro Bowl twice in Buffalo in 2013-14.
However, he has not lived up to his hefty contract that was reworked Jacksonville last February. Last season, Dareus made over $8 million dollars and the team would have been on the hook for $20 million this year had they picked up the option. That obviously wasn’t going to happen.
Dareus also has had legal troubles off the field, including a civil suit against him in Tampa for alleged sexual misconduct. As we wrote previously, a woman alleged that Dareus had sexually assaulted her in January of 2018 at a North Tampa Florida home, while Dareus was in town for the Alabama-Clemson College Football Playoff Championship Game.
However, that suit filed in Hillsborough County court was “dismissed with prejudice” last April, which means it cannot be re-filed.
Dareus, if healthy after the core muscle injury rehab, may have some value as a defensive tackle on the free agent market.
As for the Jaguars, they have former #1 pick defensive tackle Taven Bryan to play more in the middle and are trying to decide if free agent-to-be, DE Yannick Ngakoue, can be afforded for their 2020 salary cap?