With OTA’s over with and training camp coming up next, NFL fans are left with little to no important news to make do until further notice. However, the Jags have a few stories to hold them until next month when camp starts. The head of the story lines is, of course, the holdout of MJD and the holdout of Place Kicker Josh Scobee. It has been made public that MJD wants a new contract due to the fact that he feels he’s underpaid. Though he is in the top 10 of the league in terms of RB salaries, he feels that he should be payed according to a few RB’s who have more recent contracts, those players being Chris Johnson, Arian Foster, and Deangelo Williams. The Jags feel like they’ve taken care of Jones-Drew by paying him what was at the time one of top 5 RB salaries. Simple, right? I could see why there could be a hold up there. However, it’s been reported by ESPN’s John Clayton that he seems to believe Jones-Drew will be at Training Camp. I believe there is a small chance he may hold out, but Clayton knows his stuff and I wouldn’t doubt him. The bottom line is that he likely won’t miss any games this season.
Now for the main purpose of this article, and that’s Scobee’s situation. As you all know, the Jaguars designated the franchise tag to Josh Scobee this year. It is worth an estimated $2.88 million dollars. Scobee has yet to sign the tag, and has shown his displeasure with the Jags decision. He recently had a talk with Jaguars beat writer Tania Ganguli explaining the situation. He went on to say that the team hasn’t had contact with him or his agent since April. In his defense, that’s ridiculous–and if it’s true, the organization needs to step it up. Scobee also stated that during the brief period after the tag was designated to him, he felt the offers he received in April “weren’t fair” . According to NFL.com, the offer that Scobee’s agent Ken Harris is shooting for is more than that of Tampa Bay’s kicker Connor Barth, who recently received his contract on the 17th of May. Barth’s deal was a 4 year $13.2 million dollar deal with $4 million guaranteed. That would make his salary $3.3 million a year and would make him the third highest paid kicker (annually) only under the highest paid Kicker Sebastian Janakoski of the Raiders ($ 4 million a year) and the 2nd highest paid kicker Stephen Gostowski of the Patriots ($ 3.4 million a year). So here’s what the salary chart should look like for kickers.
1.) Sebastian Janakoski – 4 years $16 million = $4 million a year ($9 million guaranteed)
2.) Stephen Gostowski – 4 years roughly $14 million= $3.4 – $3.5 a year ($5 million guaranteed)
3.) Connor Barth – 4 years $13.2 million= $3.3 million a year (4 million guaranteed)
Now according to Florida Times Union, Scobee isn’t looking to become the highest paid kicker in the NFL just one of the highest paid. So if the info NFL.com reported is accurate, that Scobee’s agent is aiming for a higher deal than Barth’s $3.3 million a year deal, there’s only one other options to aim for (Gostowski’s deal). It’s not rocket science. If Scobee’s wants to become a higher paid kicker than Barth, the Jags could simply give him a deal matching Gostowki’s, which would make him the 2nd highest paid kicker in the league as well. If that’s not good enough, they could offer him a 4 year $14.4 million dollar deal which would give Scobee $3.6 a year, beating Gostowski’s deal by a measly $100,000 more a year. I’m sure $100,000 more dollars than Gostowki won’t kill the Jags, nor should Scobee’s making $100,000 dollars less be a big enough deal for him to refuse the offer. Whatever was the last offer the Jags gave Scobee was likely lower than Barth’s if the sources above are correct. Though they haven’t spoken in months all, the Jags would have to do is call Scobee and his agent with Gostowki’s contract as a building block, it’s that easy.
As for Scobee complaining that playing under the franchise tag could possibly affect his performance and mental state, nice try. As a Kicker, part of his job is to play under pressure as it is, contract or no contract. Quit being a diva, Josh. I’m no financial expert but this can be easily resolved. If anything, he should be hoping to play under the tender, which would pay him $2.88 million and practically force the Jags to pay him next year. That way he’d make the $2.88 million off the tag this year and with a contract next year he’d make at least $3.3 million in the first year, paying a little over $6.1 over 2 years. That’s more than he’d be guaranteed if he had a contract. With that said, this should be put to rest soon hopefully. Scobee is an great kicker, but I think he and Gene Smith both need to grow a set and end this fiasco.