Jaguars training camp has opened, but if you’re looking for star pass-rusher Yannick Ngakoue, you won’t find him there. Coach Doug Marrone confirmed Ngakoue’s absence on Thursday, reporting the fifth-year Maryland alum was a no-show for the start of team workouts. When asked of Ngakoue’s whereabouts, Marrone didn’t offer much insight on the subject, insisting the two haven’t spoken.
A one-time Pro Bowler with 37.5 sacks to his NFL credit, Ngakoue demanded the Jaguars trade him back in March, a request that has obviously fallen on deaf ears. The NFL’s new CBA makes it more difficult to hold out with players facing fines of up to $50,000 (hence Dalvin Cook’s presence at Vikings camp), though those rules aren’t applicable to Ngakoue, who is technically unsigned and free to do as he pleases. Of the 15 players franchise-tagged this year, only Ngakoue has yet to sign either a long-term deal or the one-year franchise tender. Ngakoue would earn a considerable $17.788 million under the tag—a hefty raise on the $2.025 million he netted in 2019—but clearly the disgruntled 25-year-old has no interest in remaining a Jaguar.
The 6’2,” 246-pounder has been linked to the Eagles, Jets, Packers and Seahawks, among other trade destinations. The Jaguars seem to be holding out for a godfather offer, which has yet to materialize. Ngakoue, for his part, has said he’d be amenable to signing his tender, just not with Jacksonville.
Frustrated with the team’s direction under Marrone and GM Dave Caldwell, Ngakoue took to Twitter to voice his displeasure back in April, starting a spat with Tony Khan, son of Jaguars owner Shahid Khan. That “fanning the flames” approach worked wonders for Jamal Adams, who saw his trade wish granted two days after ripping Jets ownership as well as head coach Adam Gase last week. However, the Jaguars must have seen through his ruse as three months have passed with Ngakoue no closer to being dealt.
What happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object? Apparently this.