The Jacksonville Jaguars are expected to spend a lot of money this offseason in free agency, in part because they have to. Even though the team is likely to hand out some massive contracts, no one should really be all that concerned with the team wrecking their salary cap situation going forward.
The latest rumor for the Jaguars in free agency is that they're "expected to make a strong play for Ndamukong Suh" in free agency, at least if you're very good at manipulating and writing "clicky" headlines. The latest is from CBS Sports' Jason LaCanfora, who SPECULATES that the Jaguars will be in play for Suh in free agency.
Count me among those who believe Jacksonville makes a very strong play for Ndamukong Suh, who is prized to make more money than anyone else in this free agent class. The Jags will be looking for a high-end pass catcher as well. If they ended up with either Randall Cobb or Julius Thomas I would not be surprised in the least.
Why this rumor makes sense
Suh is an elite NFL talent and arguably the best interior lineman in the league. The Jaguars currently are devoid of elite NFL talent and bringing a player of that caliber certainly makes the Jaguars better. Suh is a dominant inside force both against the run and as a pass rusher, plus both of the Jaguars interior starting defensive lineman are coming off knee surgeries. Sen'Derrick Marks, most notably. tore his ACL in the final game of the season and may not get back to what he was until the mid-way point of the 2015 season, if ever. The Jaguars, despite being Top 6 in sacks in 2014, still need to improve their pass rush and Suh would certainly help that. It's also likely he can play the nose, three-technique and even the five-technique in the Jaguars defense if you really need to find a spot for him.
Why this rumor doesn't make sense
Boy, that really shifted quickly from a national writer thinking the two teams with the most salary cap room could make a play for a player likely to get a contract worth over $100 million to a team being "expected" to pursue him in free agency, huh?
I'll go ahead and say if the Jaguars sign Suh in free agency, I'd love it. I wouldn't be upset at all.
I just don't think it makes very much sense.
Yes, you don't know if Marks is going to come back 100 percent from his knee injury, but Marks and Suh essentially play the same position in the Jaguars defensive scheme. You also just paid Roy Miller, signed Ziggy Hood to a four-year deal last season and have third-year defensive lineman Abry Jones, who's shown quite a bit of promise filling in. Defensive tackle is arguably the team's deepest position, and going out and paying a guy a $100 million deal just doesn't seem to really fit with what the team is doing. Based on everything I've heard, if they team pursues a defensive lineman in free agency, it will be more of an edge rusher than an interior lineman.
Everything the Jaguars have been building towards seems to point to them getting younger on the defensive line and older on the offensive side of the ball.
Likelihood the Jaguars even chase Suh in free agency?
Slim, if at all.
As I said, if they want to go pay Suh and bring him to Jacksonville, rad. I'm down. I just don't see them going that direction and linking the two to me just screams "Jacksonville has a lot of money, so link them to a player who will get a lot of money."
Now, as far as the speculation of the Jaguars chasing Julius Thomas and Randall Cobb... that probably has a lot more merit.