On Friday morning, it was announced that the Jacksonville Jaguars were releasing 29-year old defensive tackle Malik Jackson, along with running backs Carlos Hyde and safety Tashaun Gipson.
So far today the Jaguars have released Malik Jackson, Carlos Hyde and Tashaun Gipson.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 8, 2019
There are no plans to release QB Blake Bortles today, per source. Jaguars likely need to wait to make sure they procure a free-agent QB next week before moving on from Bortles.
With Jackson’s release, it makes an already interesting free agent pool that much deeper. Other names currently in the group include Timmy Jernigan, Sheldon Richardson, and Johnathan Hankins.
Jackson would present the Chargers with a sizable presence that they haven’t possessed in quite some time. Jackson’s 6-foot-6 frame would tower over the likes of recent starters in the interior, Brandon Mebane (6-1) and Corey Liuget (6-3).
DT Malik Jackson can still play. Still has jump, very good hand usage and range.... pic.twitter.com/cjSe0LH00V— Cover 1 (@Cover_1_) March 8, 2019
I believe Jackson could play anywhere along the interior but using him as a penetrating 3-technique would be the sweet spot in marrying his abilities with what Gus Bradley wants to do with this defense.
The Chargers’ highest-paid defensive tackle up to this point has been Mebane, making a friendly 4.5 mil/year. Jackson’s 6-year contract with the Jaguars, signed in 2016, was good for up to 85.5 million and a 14.25 mil/year average. That’s likely far too rich for the Chargers at a position they just used a third-round pick on in last year’s draft, but if they deem the need for help in the interior as bad as most fans do, I could see them offering maybe a 3-year, 30 mil/yr deal to get his services for the next couple years.
In recent years, when the Chargers have waited on their “splash” signing of the off-season, they’ve given 3 years, 39 million to Casey Hayward, 4 years, 53 million to left tackle Russell Okung, and 2 years, 15 million to center Mike Pouncey. Those all sort’ve float around the 8-13 million per year average I expect them to use on a free agent this season. But at the end of the day, if Jackson believes he should still get paid as a top-6 defensive tackle in the league, the Bolts may have to find some reinforcements elsewhere this free agency period.