Jaguars GM Dave Caldwell Says No Update on Yannick Ngakoue Situation

John Shipley

Yannick Ngakoue hasn't been shy about his desire to depart from the Jacksonville Jaguars this offseason. He routinely has stated as much on social media, and last week he made a national television appearance on ESPN to discuss his plans to continue his career elsewhere.

But despite his continued push to be traded this offseason, there is no news in regards to his situation, Jaguars general manager Dave Caldwell said in a video conference with local media Thursday. The Jaguars did place the franchise tag tender on Ngakoue in March, but there have been zero other developments.

“I don’t really have a whole lot of news on that outside of we’re a week' away from the draft and we exercised a franchise tender," Caldwell said Thursday. "He has yet to sign it. Other than that, I don’t have a whole lot to add."

While it should be safe to assume Caldwell has at least had private discussions about Ngakoue's future, whether internally within the organization or with other teams inquiring about the 25-year-old pass-rusher, Caldwell said that he won't have any updates until there is actually news on the Ngakoue front. 

"Out of respect for him and his team and our team, I think it’s best to just – when I have news for you guys, I’ll let you guys know where we’re at," Caldwell said. 

Ngakoue, who is second on the Jaguars' all-time career sack list with 37.5 sacks in four seasons, has been pushing publically for a trade since March when he announced he had no interest in signing a long-term deal with the Jaguars. 

The 2016 third-round pick's relationship with the team began to erode in 2019 when the two sides failed to agree to terms on a contract extension which could have kept Ngakoue in Jacksonville long-term. Ngakoue said last week on ESPN the inability to strike a deal last offseason is the driving force behind his desire to leave Jacksonville today.

"So, you know, everything happens for a reason and not everything lasts forever," Ngakoue said on ESPN. "Things come to an end and it's time for me to move on to the next chapter of my career. And I am forever thankful for what Jacksonville has brought to me and my family, but it is time to move on."

Ngakoue recorded eight sacks, 13 tackles for loss, 15 quarterback hits, four forced fumbles, a fumble recovery, and a pick-six in 15 games in 2019. Since being drafted in 2016, Ngakoue has totaled 14 forced fumbles and 42 tackles for loss. 

Head coach Doug Marrone said on March 31 that he hopes the two sides can hopefully find a resolution soon, but he knows the situation is a tough one from a business standpoint.

"Yannick has been great. He’s done everything I’ve asked him to do as a head coach and everything Todd Wash has asked him to do on the defensive coordinator," Marrone said. "When the business starts getting involved, it’s tough. As a coach you always want your players to be happy. You want the best for your players. From that standpoint, I understand the challenges that are going on for Yann. When you look at our whole organization and how much we appreciate and love him, I think the organization and the rules of the league and the CBA, I think the players have rights and the teams have rights and what you do as a coach is hope all this stuff can be resolved in a positive way for everyone. 

"I’m just hoping that somewhere down the line or somehow all this stuff can be resolved in a way, but again I understand both sides to it. It’s a part that I’ve always struggled with, the business end of it."

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