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Derrick Harvey and Quentin Groves: Still Unsigned, Still Waiting

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As of this afternoon, Training Camp Eve, the Jaguars duo of rookie Defensive Ends was still unsigned. Derrick Harvey and Quentin Groves have yet to sign their rookie deals, leaving the Jaguars in a situation where they may be opening camp without their first and second round picks.

There's a couple of things at play here that need to be addressed. First, simply by missing the first day or two of camp does not doom the Jaguars season. In fact, coming to proper terms with Harvey is as much controlled by the Jaguars as it does Ken Kremer, Harvey's agent. Top ten draft pick deals are notoriously complicated, with esclators, options, bonus schedules, and the looming spectre of an uncapped year in 2010. I would much rather have the Jaguars and Derrick Harvey take a little longer and do the contract right than to have an issue in a few years because the sides rushed through the process.

Quentin Groves seems to be hampered by a lack of signings at and around where he was drafted, which effects the "slotting" that usually sets up contracts in the second round.

Second, missing the Coaches Speech on Friday night, or the first shorts and t-shirt practice on Saturday will not effect Harvey or Groves' development in the Jaguars system. If they missed the first week or two, there'd be an issue, but they are not quarterbacks, and they're not going to miss more than the first few days at most.

So there's no reason to panic. Holdouts, in my opinion, are when a player declares that he's not showing up unless he gets more money, like Antoine Cason did with the Chargers, or Devin Hester with the Bears. Missing the first day or two because of slotting or specific contract language is acceptable, albeit imperfect.

So don't worry about it. They'll be in camp. I expect Groves to make it on time, with Harvey a day or so later. As long as they're in pads for the Oklahoma on Monday, they'll be fine. If we get to Tuesday with either one unsigned, then by all means raise hell.

-Chris