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Jaguars general manager Dave Caldwell on Yannick Ngakoue: ‘We’re gonna try to get him here and keep him here’

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The Jaguars general manager reiterated once again how the team feels about Yannick Ngakoue staying in Jacksonville.

NFL: MAR 06 Scouting Combine Photo by Zach Bolinger/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Jaguars general manager Dave Caldwell spoke with the media today answering a flurry of questions regarding the organization’s offseason preparation. When asked about Jaguars defensive end Yannick Ngakoue, Caldwell made it clear that the team will not play the negotiations game in the media.

As he stated during his end-of-the-season press conference, Caldwell reiterated once again that the team would like for Ngakoue to remain a Jacksonville Jaguars player long-term, and the team will do everything they can to keep him.

“I think in talking to Doug [Marrone] and talking to [director of public relations] Tad [Dickman] and everybody, I think the best thing for us to do as an organization is when we have news for you guys on that is to let you guys know when we have news on it,” Caldwell said. “There’s still a process that needs to be played, but I think you guys know how we feel about him. We want him here, we’re gonna try to get him here and keep him here, one way or another, so I think I’ll leave it at that.”

The Jaguars have not given any updates regarding their contract negotiations with Ngakoue — for good reason —, typically once the negotiations get publicized it can place undo pressure on the player or the team which will sour all parties involved. Caldwell says it’s best “for all parties involved” to address the situation when the team has any news regarding his contract.

The Jaguars have yet to sign Ngakoue to a long-term deal, however that does not mean the team will not get a deal done before the start of the 2020 season. Keeping Ngakoue in Jacksonville “one way or another”, could once again be a sign that the franchise tag is very much in play for the young pass rusher.

Yesterday, ESPN’s Mike DiRocco reported that Ngakoue is looking for a deal averaging $22M per season which would make him the highest paid defensive end in the NFL. If the Jaguars opt to franchise tag Ngakoue, the team would be on the hook for a one-year $19.3M cap hit, only $3M short of Ngakoue’s reportedly desired salary.

The Jaguars will have from February 27th to March 12th to decide whether or not they want to place the franchise tag on Ngakoue. The team will then have until around July 15th to secure a long-term deal with the veteran pass rusher.