The Jaguars wrapped up their offseason with the last of their mandatory mini-camp and their allowed OTAs for the team concluding this week. There is a lot to be optimistic about headed into training camp in just over a month.
However, there is something that is lingering and that’s #1 pick Gators defensive tackle Taven Bryan remaining unsigned. And despite the rookie salary cap and slotting of that money basically being laid out for the 32 teams, still about half of the first round remains unsigned headed into htis weekend.
So, while the Bucs got their deal done with DT Vita Vea and the Dolphins the same with DB Minkah Fitzpatrick, Jaguars fans are left to wonder if the team is just being diligent and holding firm on whatever is stopping the agreement? Or, is there something else up, like amount of guaranteed money/years in the deal that’s keeping the sides apart?
Now, speaking of Vea’s deal in Tampa Bay, the two other defensive lineman that were taken right after him, Daron Payne of the Redskins and Marcus Davenport of the Saints are also signed. That means Bryan is the only defensive lineman of the four taken in round one that is unsigned at this point.
And, Jaguars VP of football Tom Coughlin and GM David Caldwell are veterans of this part of the negotiation, and again, the money is slotted for Bryan. This would lead you to believe that it gets done before Bryan misses practice time.
Ultimately though, these things can drag on, as the Chargers found out two years ago with DE Joey Bosa, who held out for over five weeks and missed all four preseason games. Granted, Bosa was picked at third overall and was haggling over a large amount of signing bonus under the rookie cap vs. guarantees over the four year length of the deal.
Jacksonville has no such issue with Bryan’s deal.
So for now, we wait with the Jaguars and their fans to see if it gets done before workouts are missed.
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