Jaguars DE Yannick Ngakoue Has Yet to Report to Start of Training Camp
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Disgruntled star defensive end Yannick Ngakoue is the lone Jacksonville Jaguars to not report to the start of the team's 2020 training camp, adding another twist to his lengthy standoff with the franchise.
When asked during a Thursday press conference via Mircosoft Teams whether the Jaguars were at full strength aside from the five players they have on the COVID-19 list, head coach Doug Marrone said, "Yes, except for Yannick."
Marrone said he has not spoken to the defensive end, but Marrone said he was not overly concerned with how Ngakoue will be prepared in the event he does report to the team, a point he has made a few times in the past.
"But like I said before, he’s one player that I know is always ready," Marrone said Thursday. .
Ngakoue has been in a dispute throughout the entirety of the offseason. In March, the fifth-year veteran and 2016 third-round pick announced he had no intention of signing a long-term deal with the team, over six months after he and the team failed to agree to terms on a contract during the 2019 offseason.
The Jaguars placed the franchise tag tender on Ngakoue later that same month, but the former Pro Bowler has yet to sign it. The tender is valued at $17,788,000 for 2020, which would make Ngakoue the highest-paid player on the Jaguars' roster and among the highest-paid players at his position.
Ngakoue has gone public with his demands for a departure from the franchise on more than one occasion, most notably during a self-instigated Twitter argument with co-owner and senior vice president of football administration and technology Tony Khan.
There was a July 15 deadline for the Ngakoue and the Jaguars, or any other team, to agree to a long-term contract, but the deadline passed without any agreement, meaning Ngakoue will now be forced to play the 2020 season on the one-year tender.
"Like I said before, I’m gonna reiterate it again, as a coach you’d love that perfect harmony between management and the player as far as the business end of things," Marrone said Thursday. "I think one way to look at it, both sides have rights, from a management side to a players side. I think as a coach, you’re always looking for a solution, you know, that you can be part of to help bring parties together. But [general manager] Dave [Caldwell] would probably be able to better speak on where everything is at as far as talks and whether they’ve talked or not."
In four seasons, Ngakoue has recorded 37.5 sacks (second-most in franchise history), 122 tackles, 42 tackles for loss, 14 forced fumbles, three fumble recoveries and two interceptions in 63 games, missing only one game due to injury in his career. His best season was a Pro Bowl year in 2017 when he recorded 12 sacks, six forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries and 10 tackles for loss.
Ngakoue's main issue with the Jaguars seemingly stems from the team's failure to sign him to a long-term deal during the 2019 offseason. This led to Ngakoue starting a short holdout during last year's training camp, though he eventually reported and played in Week 1.
"What happened between me and Jacksonville is very simple. The organization had an opportunity to keep me long term last offseason, things kind of broke off," Ngakoue said on ESPN's NFL Live with Adam Schefter in April.
"So, you know, everything happens for a reason and not everything lasts forever," Ngakoue said. "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."