As Jadeveon Clowney’s future remains uncertain, the Seattle Seahawks continue to be linked to disgruntled Jaguars pass-rusher Yannick Ngakoue who has been vocal about his desire to leave Jacksonville. ESPN’s Adam Schefter told 97.5 the Fanatic that there is a strong probability that the Jaguars move Ngakoue during the NFL draft.
“I still think the team, the Jaguars, has to move him during the draft,” Schefter told 97.5 the Fan. “The week of the draft, during the draft, my guess is these are usually deals that are made often while teams are on the clock. They’re going to want back significant compensation for him. It remains to be seen how much they actually will get back. There will be [those] in that organization, like the owner, who will not want to move him which means that they will be firmer in their price. But if they don’t trade him then they got a mess on their hands, and I believe the player when he said he doesn’t plan to play for them again. I believe he will continue to sit so that’s not good for anybody. I think that the right thing for them to do logistically is to move on from him.”
The Seahawks’ Chances of Landing Ngakoue in a Trade Depends on Their Desire to Pay the Pass Rusher
Schefter listed the Seahawks along with four other teams as the top contenders to land Ngakoue in a trade. The big question is if the Seahawks are willing to give Ngakoue a lucrative long-term deal.
“…Now, the question is where does he go,” Schefter noted. “So, when you look at the teams, that to me, would be in the pass rush market. I think you look at them like this. In no particular order, maybe from the top of the draft down, you look at the Giants. You look at the Browns. You look at the Raiders. You look at the Eagles. You look at the Seahawks. I think those are five teams, in my mind, that will look to address pass rusher during the draft. Every team will, but those are five teams that realistically, between picks and money, you know, you can figure out a way that somehow they would make a trade for Yannick Ngakoue work.”
The Jaguars Are Asking for a 1st Round Pick for Ngakoue
The Seahawks have been unwilling to pay top dollar for pass rushers like Clowney and Frank Clark. There is a chance the Seahawks rate Ngakoue as a better player than Clowney since he does not have the same injury history and has a stronger track record of getting to the quarterback.
There is also the issue of the Seahawks potentially giving up significant draft capital only to be in a similar situation next offseason that they are in now with Clowney. Shefter reported that the Jaguars are asking for a first-round pick in a trade, but it is unclear if they will land that for a player that only has one more year left on his current deal.
“They’re going to want a first-round pick maybe then some for him,” Schefter said. “I don’t know whether they’ll get a first-round pick for him or not. We’ll see how it shakes out. It could be swapping draft spots. It could be swapping picks. It could be any combination of factors that get a deal done. Now, in the end, I would guess that they do trade him.”
When asked about how things have escalated with the Jaguars, Ngakoue noted on NFL Live that “things come to an end” but the defensive end emphasized that he is ready for the “next chapter.”
“[Contract talks] kind of broke off,” Ngakoue said, per NFL.com. “Everything happens for a reason, and not everything lasts forever. Things come to an end, and it’s time for me to move on to the next chapter of my career. And I’m forever thankful for what Jacksonville has brought to me and my family, but it’s time to move on.”
There are significant challenges for the Seahawks to overcome to make a deal for Ngakoue, but the rumors are not going away. If the Seahawks are committed to giving Ngakoue a long-term deal, the front office is likely to be more willing to trade draft picks to acquire the pass rusher.