Maurice Jones Drew is the Jaguars’ best player and he has been noticeably absent from voluntary team activities so far this offseason as he is looking for a new contract. Jones Drew has two years left on his current contract, but he knows how short running back’s shelf lives are and he is very underpaid over the last 2 seasons of his current deal at a total of 9.4 million. He’s likely seeking a deal similar to what players like Chris Johnson, LeSean McCoy, and Arian Foster have gotten in the past calendar year, 8-9 million per year over 5 years.
The Jaguars, however, stated today that they have no such plans to even discuss a new deal with Maurice Jones Drew and want him to “fulfill the obligation” of his last 2 years, according to comments by GM Gene Smith. This seems a bit hypocritical because teams, the Jaguars included, frequently rip up the contracts of underperforming players rather than “fulfilling their obligation.” Though, perhaps, this Jaguars front office has never had a high profile player like Maurice Jones Drew so they don’t understand how this works and what it means when a guy earns a new contract.
MJD has not said whether or not he will attend minicamp, which is voluntary. If he skips it, the Jaguars can fine him 60K, but that amount of money is a drop in the ocean compared to what he could get in a new deal from the team if he takes his holdout seriously. We’ll have to see what happens. If he skips, he officially becomes a holdout and it would be a big sign that he’s serious about wanting a new deal. If he holds out officially, the Jaguars may soften their stance because he’s essentially their whole offense.