Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Big Dollars for Jackson; Report: Jags to Give DL 6-Year, $90 Million Contract

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Big Dollars for Jackson; Report: Jags to Give DL 6-Year, $90 Million Contract

Article excerpt

Byline: Ryan O'Halloran

Five days before last month's Super Bowl, then-Denver Broncos defensive lineman/impending free agent Malik Jackson was approached by the Times-Union and told he would be a good fit for the Jaguars.

Jackson's face lit up.

"Tell them to give me some money!" he said.

Shortly after 4 p.m. Wednesday, when the NFL's signing period opens, the Jaguars will do just that.

And not just "some" money. A lot of money. Monster money. Record money.

Per News9 in Denver, Jackson's representation and the Jaguars have agreed to the framework of a six-year, $90 million contract that includes $42 million guaranteed.

Late Tuesday night, the Jaguars made their first offensive addition. ESPN reported New York Jets running back Chris Ivory will sign with the Jaguars.

As word trickled out of the Jaguars-Jackson unofficial agreement, Jackson wrote on Twitter: "What a time to be alive."

Especially for a player in his mid-20s who just won the Super Bowl and whose team didn't have enough salary-cap space to keep him.

In terms of guaranteed money, Jackson, 26, is by far the most expensive free-agent addition in Jaguars history.

Only 12 other free agents signed contracts that included at least $10 million guaranteed. Hopefully for the Jaguars, Jackson works out better than Jerry Porter ($10 million in 2008), Aaron Kampman ($11 million in 2010) and Laurent Robinson ($14 million in 2012).

Last year, general manager Dave Caldwell signed four players to contracts that included at least $10 million guaranteed: Julius Thomas ($21 million), Jared Odrick ($17 million), Jermey Parnell ($14.5 million) and Davon House ($10 million).

More financial information: Jackson's per-year value ranks fifth among NFL defensive players, behind Miami's Ndamukong Suh, Kansas City's Justin Houston, Houston's JJ. Watt and Buffalo's Marcel Dareus.

The Jaguars' 31st-ranked defense desperately needed reinforcements, and Jackson could be just the beginning. The Jaguars are expected to pursue help at cornerback, free safety and pass rusher throughout the week.

In Jackson, the Jaguars feel they have a versatile player who can play both interior spots. The expectation is he'll share time with Sen'Derrick Marks at the three-technique position, which lines up over the guard's outside shoulder.

And on passing downs, the Jaguars could use Marks and Jackson (6-foot-5, 293 pounds) together to form a potentially stellar interior pass rush. Marks' 2015 was derailed early by a knee injury sustained in December 2014. After playing four games, he sustained a season-ending triceps injury.

Jackson played 75.3 percent of Denver's defensive snaps in 2015, posting career highs in tackles (45), pass deflections (seven) and fumble recoveries (two).

"He did a good job," Broncos defensive line coach Bill Kollar said last month. …

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