clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

2023 NFL Trade Deadline: Jacksonville Jaguars primer with mock offers

Chase Young, Terrace Marshall, and other names the Jaguars could acquire before the trade deadline.

If you buy something from an SB Nation link, Vox Media may earn a commission. See our ethics statement.

Cincinnati Bengals v New England Patriots Photo by Nick Grace/Getty Images

It’s one of the absolute best times of the year for NFL fans. The trade deadline is upon us.

Teams have until 4:00 p.m. ET on Halloween day to make a trade. As a treat, here are a few mock offers the Jacksonville Jaguars could reasonably send out the door.

But first, a state of the franchise.

The Jaguars will not be looking to alter any starting positions this month. Marvin Jones was upgraded with Calvin Ridley, and Jawaan Taylor was replaced by Anton Harrison, but Jacksonville hasn’t made any other significant roster changes since 2022.

The organization’s focus this past offseason was to add depth; the same approach (if any) will be in effect through this year’s trade deadline.

Jacksonville could use some additional assistance in its wide receiver, offensive line, defensive line, and cornerback rooms -- but reinforcements via players returning from injury (Zay Jones, Walker Little, DaVon Hamilton, and Tyson Campbell, respectively) should help those position groups. Rookies Brenton Strange, Tank Bigsby, and Antonio Johnson may continue getting more involved as well to aid the tight end, running back, and safety units. And the strength of each side of the ball lies in the quarterback and linebacker corps.

If there’s one position the Jaguars might hunt this month, it’s edge rusher. Jacksonville has a stout run defense partly due to Travon Walker’s play at outside linebacker on early downs -- but when it comes to chasing opposing quarterbacks, last year’s first-overall pick is leaving some meat on the bone.

Walker (3.5 sacks this season) has a narrow lead over K’Lavon Chaisson (2.0 sacks) as the Robin to Josh Allen’s Batman. Allen is living up to his draft pedigree with 9.0 sacks (second behind Danielle Hunter) and 16 quarterback hits (third behind Nick Bosa and Myles Garrett) this season; Walker has half as many knockdowns and ranks 56th in win rate among 113 qualifying edge rushers, per PFF.

The Jaguars showed their interest in the position by bringing in Yannick Ngakoue, Calais Campbell, and Jadeveon Clowney before the season. Those AFC South veterans all left town without a deal because Jacksonville was unwilling to promise starting-caliber snaps.

The reason for that is a mix of Walker’s unsung role against the run and front office PR. Jags brass was only ever offering a part-time contract to free agents because a Walker demotion could suggest a draft-day mistake.

Now that it’s two months into the season, and Walker and Chaisson haven’t taken the same step as Allen, perhaps the Jaguars will re-evaluate. It’s still too early to make a conclusion on the Walker selection, and he’ll continue to see a ton of snaps on defense, but a Chaisson upgrade would make a lot of sense. His 3.9% win rate ranks 105th this season.

Jacksonville’s pass rush has done fine work through eight games, but some extra heat would help once the calendar flips to January. Here’s how they can light a fire under Mike Caldwell’s already-smoldering defense.

Jacksonville receives: Danielle Hunter

Minnesota receives: 2024 4th (via NO), 2025 3rd

From ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler on Oct. 20:

Lately, [the Vikings] have not been exploring a trade for Hunter, despite some external interest ... Jacksonville was linked to Hunter in the preseason, though that was before pass-rusher Josh Allen decided to have a career year with seven sacks in his first six games.

There were also Hunter-to-Jacksonville rumors in late July and earlier this month, but a trade appears to be unlikely, even after Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins tore his Achilles in Week 8.

Hunter is the best pass rusher (hypothetically) available right now. He became the first NFL player to reach double-digit sacks this season and has 81 total since entering the league in 2015 -- only Aaron Donald, Chandler Jones, Cameron Jordan, Khailil Mack, T.J. Watt, and Myles Garrett have more in that span.

Jacksonville receives: Chase Young

Washington receives: 2024 6th, 2025 2nd

From PFF’s Brad Spielberger on Oct. 18:

[Washington took] a gamble by declining Young’s option and also not extending fellow edge rusher Montez Sweat. NFL teams have only one franchise tag at their disposal each offseason, and if the team did try to engage in extension talks with Sweat or Young, he’d hold a ton of leverage.

Young and Sweat also share representation and every player benefits from reaching the open market, so there’s no real reason to entertain an extension on one player just to free up the franchise tag for the other player, unless the team is willing to pay an exorbitant price. Washington really backed themselves into a corner here. Netting only a 2025 compensatory pick when one of the two signs elsewhere in free agency is a poor process when they could recoup potentially more in a trade.

From The Athletic’s Dianna Russini on Oct. 21:

I was told Washington has made calls to take the temperature of the market but is staying patient now, and that the next two weeks of play will shape the decision on their futures. The sense I get out of Washington is one of them will be on the move … if Washington can get the proper compensation.

From Russini on Oct. 28:

The Washington Commanders are listening to offers on Chase Young and Montez Sweat. They want a second-rounder but have only received offers in the third-round range.

From ESPN’s Adam Schefter on Oct. 28:

The Washington Commanders’ decision on whether to proceed with trading players or pushing for the playoffs is expected to be influenced by Sunday’s game against the Philadelphia Eagles, sources told ESPN. (The Commanders lost.)

If the Commanders do end up trading away players, the focus will be on their defensive line, where Chase Young and Montez Sweat each are in the last year of their contracts, ready to become free agents. Washington is not expected to be able to retain both pass-rushers, and at least one team already has inquired about Sweat, according to sources.

...The Commanders also received trade inquiries on Jonathan Allen after the defensive tackle’s postgame eruption after last Sunday’s loss to the New York Giants, but Washington said it is not willing to deal him and wouldn’t even have the conversation with other teams, according to sources.

From Fox Sports’ Jay Glazer on Oct. 29:

“Washington, they have three defensive linemen (Chase Young, Montez Sweat, and Jonathan Allen) ... there’s a lot of teams that call Washington for all three of those players. At least one of those three D-linemen will get moved this week.”

The best ability is availability. As overused as that phrase may be, it’s the reason Young could be departing the DMV area he grew up in just four years after being billed as a better prospect than fellow Buckeyes Joey and Nick Bosa.

Young’s inability to stay on the field throughout his career makes him a potential sell by Washington but a buy-low for every other team. It’s not every day that a player of Young’s pedigree becomes available: the former top-two pick racked up 30.5 sacks in three seasons at Ohio State and measured in at 6’ 5” and 264 pounds with 33 ¾” arms at the NFL Combine.

Still just 24 years old, Young currently ranks top-15 in sacks (6), pressures (38), and pass rush win rate (18.4%) among 117 qualifying edge defenders per PFF.

Jacksonville receives: Brian Burns, 2025 5th

Carolina receives: 2024 1st, 2025 2nd, 2025 3rd

It won’t happen, but this is probably what it’d take.

Jacksonville receives: Josh Uche

New England receives: 2024 4th (via NO), 2025 6th

From Fox Sports’ Henry McKenna on Oct. 17:

The #Patriots have had no contract discussions with edge Josh Uche, per source. He will be an FA in 2024 and the trade deadline is looming.

Uche had 11.5 sacks last year. So far, he has 2.5 sacks this year, though he suffered a foot injury.

Are Patriots selling? Uche has value.

From the Boston Herald’s Doug Kyed on Oct. 22:

Uche, 25, is the most logical trade candidate on the roster. Another team would value Uche, a situational pass rusher, more heavily than the Patriots.

Pass rushers get paid a premium, and the Patriots historically have not invested in players who cannot contribute on all three downs. Even with other edge defenders on the roster injured, Uche is 16th on the team in defensive snaps but leads the Patriots with 17 pressures.

From Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer on Oct. 27:

New England’s another one that’s been sniffing around, seeing what’s out there for their players draft-pick-wise. Of course, Bill Belichick would need to rubber-stamp any trade, but the team does have a boatload of contract-year vets who could be tradable.

The three young players that best fit that description would be OL Mike Onwenu, S Kyle Dugger and DE Josh Uche ... Uche, who’s more of a designated pass rusher in the Patriots’ defense, is the guy most likely to be moved, because he’ll probably be the most difficult of the group to re-sign. He also has, as an edge rusher, a premium skill that could bring New England a decent return.

From ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler on Oct. 28:

Two AFC East names worth watching at trade deadline: #Bills corner Kaiir Elam and #Patriots pass rusher Josh Uche. Both players have garnered trade interest, per sources.

Elam, a former first-round pick, was inactive Thursday, while Uche is in the final year of his rookie deal.

According to PFF, “Uche generated 56 quarterback pressures and notched 12 sacks on just 285 pass-rush reps in 2022, with his 19.2% pass-rush win rate ranking sixth among edge defenders and his 20.7% pressure rate placing second.” His 23.9% win rate on ‘true pass sets’ this season ranks 23rd behind Hunter (24.5%) and Young (24.1%).

The Patriots’ sack master is probably *the* name to watch in the next 24 hours for Jaguars fans. Uche is a third down, pass rush specialist who would send Smoot and Chaisson down the depth chart and allow Walker to line up inside.

Jacksonville receives: Carl Lawson

New York receives: 2024 7th

Russini wrote on Oct 21., “The New York Jets have made it known that pass rusher Carl Lawson is available.” She reported the following week, “The Jets aren’t getting many calls on Carl Lawson or Dalvin Cook.”

Lawson took a pay cut to stay in the city back in May, but the 28-year-old missed training camp with a back injury and hasn’t refound a role in a Jets edge rotation that features two recent first-rounders. Lawson has recorded just 73 defensive snaps this season after racking up 73 total quarterback hits in Cincinnati from 2017-21.

Jacksonville receives: DeAngelo Malone, 2024 7th

Atlanta receives: 2024 5th

From the Falcons’ Tori McElhaney on June 7:

Since Ryan Nielsen was hired as the Falcons next defensive coordinator, I’ve really wondered about how he planned to use DeAngelo Malone. Previously a late-round pick as a defensive end, Malone didn’t really fit what I considered to be the look of Nielsen’s preferred edge presence. When looking at players like Bud Dupree or Calais Campbell (or even a heftier Arnold Ebiketie) who’s frames are as big as they come, Malone’s smaller frame didn’t seem to fit.

After being selected 82nd overall in last year’s draft, Malone registered 29 tackles and a sack in 216 defensive snaps as a rookie. But the former Western Kentucky quarterback hunter (32.5 sacks in five college seasons) has logged zero defensive snaps this season under new management.

Malone would provide immediate juice on special teams. Falcons general manager Terry Fontenot said after last season, “DeAngelo, you go watch in a game and he’s running down on kickoff knocking the hell out of people because he’s just a tough, physical, competitive player.” Though the Jaguars also value size on defense, Malone would find more opportunity in Jacksonville than Atlanta.

Jacksonville receives: Darrell Taylor

Seattle receives: 2024 6th, 2025 6th

From Breer: “Seattle’s one final team I’ve had my eye on. They were open to dealing Darrell Taylor before Uchenna Nwosu was hurt, and have also been sniffing around on adding some depth on the edge. So I’d expect that the Seahawks will be active on the phone over the next four days.”

The Seahawks just sent a 2nd and a 5th to the Giants for defensive tackle Leonard Williams. He doesn’t completely solve their edge depth, but maybe his presence will be enough for Seattle to deal Darrell Taylor. The former Vol has played 44-48% of snaps in each of his first three NFL seasons for the ‘Hawks, with 18.5 sacks collected in that time.

Jacksonville’s available cap space and draft capital:

Current cap space

$6.55 million (19th in the league)

2024 cap space

$36.95 million (19th in the league)

Upcoming contracts

Josh Allen and Calvin Ridley are among 18 Jaguars playing on the final year of their current deals. Trevor Lawrence will be eligible for an extension next offseason.

2024 NFL Draft picks

Two players who could bolster depth on offense and would cost a Day 3 pick:

Carolina WR Terrace Marshall

Gosh, is it fun to imagine what the offense would look like with a Madden-like trade for Mike Evans or Tee Higgins. But Jacksonville is spending the second-most money at the wide receiver position in 2023 and is set to spend the ninth-most money there in 2024 -- and that’s without factoring in a new contract for Ridley.

The Jaguars will not be spending big at the receiver position this fall, but there is an argument to be made for more depth. Jacksonville’s passing offense has missed Zay Jones more than anyone could’ve guessed; it might be wise to upgrade the WR4 spot with a decent pass-catcher.

Marshall has 62 catches for 751 yards and a score in two and a half seasons since he was drafted 59th overall in 2021. The forgotten wideout from LSU’s 2020 championship season would add a size element missing from Jacksonville’s receiver corps -- Marshall measured in at 6’ 4” and 200 pounds with a 4.4-second 40-yard dash (86th percentile) at the combine.

Fowler reported last Thursday that Marshall received permission to seek a trade (i.e., Marshall’s agent is letting teams know his guy is available). He already made sense as a trade candidate -- the Panthers added Adam Thielen, Jonathan Mingo, and D.J. Chark this offseason and are still looking for receiver help -- but now, Marshall seems like the most talented and likely wideout to be moved at the deadline.

Chicago RB D’Onte Foreman

Back to the Windy City. If the Jaguars want to continue looking to boost its short-yardage run game via ballcarrier investments, Foreman could be the bowling ball Jacksonville’s been after.

Doug Pederson’s Eagles signed for LeGarrette Blount before the season and traded for Jay Ajayi at the deadline during Philadelphia’s 2017 Super Bowl run. That said, the Jaguars might just promote D’Ernest Johnston to RB2 over Tank Bigsby rather than acquiring another back.

Two players who could be on their way out of town:

Ben Bartch

Bartch was a fourth-round pick in 2020 who has started 20 games (including 11 in 2021) and played in 41 games for the Jaguars. He started the first three games of this season but was ultimately benched for Tyler Shatley. Bartch should be close to 100% health following his 2022 season-ending knee injury at this point.

K’Lavon Chaisson

Chaisson has five sacks in three and a half seasons since he was drafted 20th overall in 2020. The Jaguars can’t afford to lose any pass rush depth as its current roster stands, but if Jacksonville does bring in a new face, perhaps they’ll let Chaisson try to resurrect his career elsewhere. He and Bartch are set to be unrestricted free agents next offseason.

Thanks for reading! Let us know which player you want the Jags to acquire in the comments below!