Report: Jaguars’ Pass-Rusher Yannick Ngakoue Seeking $22 Million Annually in New Deal

John Shipley

In what is far from surprising news, Jacksonville Jaguars' defensive end Yannick Ngakoue is seeking a massive deal this offseason. According to a report from Mike DiRocco of ESPN, the 24-year old pass-rusher is gunning for a contract that will pay him an annual sum of $22 million.

Ngakoue has been one of the Jaguars' best players since being drafted in the third-round of the 2016 NFL Draft, and the young and talented pass-rusher now wants to cash in on the production he has recorded since entering the league. Ngakoue has 37.5 sacks in his career (second-most in Jaguars' history), 42 tackles for loss, and 14 forced fumbles.

"Ngakoue wants a long-term deal and is seeking about $22 million annually. He also indicated late last season that he would be unlikely to show up until the Aug. 11 reporting deadline for players under contract if he had to play on the franchise tag," DiRocco wrote. 

$22 million annually per year would put Ngakoue below Chicago Bears outside linebacker Khalil Mack in terms of annual money, but would make him the highest-paid defensive end in the NFL. 

The Jaguars and Ngakoue engaged in short-lived talks on a long-term contract extension last summer, but the negotiations quickly fell apart between Ngakoue's camp and the Tom Coughlin-led front office. 

With Coughlin no longer in the picture, general manager Dave Caldwell has let it be known that he wants Ngakoue back in 2020, stating it was the team's "No. 1 priority" during his end of season press conference on Dec. 31. 

If the Jaguars and Ngakoue can't find any middle ground and agree to contract terms, then the Jaguars would likely use the franchise or transition tag on their star pass-rusher. With Caldwell and head coach Doug Marrone each entering a must-win season for them to retain their jobs, it is hard to fathom the Jaguars would let Ngakoue walk in free agency on Mar. 18. 

The deadline for a tag being placed on players has changed this year due to the ongoing collective bargaining agreement talks between the NFL and the NFL Players Association. The deadline is now from Feb. 27 through Mar. 12, according to NFL Network's Tom Pelissero. 

According to OverTheCap, the franchise tag for a defensive end could amount to $19.316 million next season, while a transition tag would cost $16.338 million, each a few more million dollars than last year's tags. 

Ngakoue recorded eight sacks and four forced fumbles for the Jaguars in 2019. His best season came in 2017, where he recorded a career-high 12 sacks and six forced fumbles and was named to his first Pro Bowl.

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