Following Jalen Ramsey’s public outburst on the sidelines during the Jaguars defeat to divisional rivals Houston Texans in week 2, it seemed the writing was on the wall. Soon after this display, the rather inevitable trade request landed at the door of GM Dave Caldwell.
On a short turnaround into week 3, it did appear as though any bad blood was forgotten. The Gardner Minshew hype train got up to full speed as the Jags ran over the Tennessee Titans on TNF, which just goes to show the power of having one of the NFL‘s latest darlings at the game’s most important position.
Once the furore and adoration settled down, we were reminded by Ramsey himself that his trade request remained valid. Many insiders in the NFL world believe the Jaguars asking price is “too high”. Some estimates have suggested as much as two 1st round picks, which appears to be putting the kibosh on any potential trade for now.
Despite this, a handful of teams have made enquiries for Ramsey’s services. Let’s dive into some potential scenarios.
Under the leadership of GM Howie Roseman, the Eagles have become one of the more active franchises in the trade market. The addition of Ramsey would provide an instant upgrade to this secondary, it’s a unit currently missing a star name on the perimeter. This team is in a Super Bowl window, it should strongly consider making moves like this to aid the pursuit of a second crown.
Defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz should be crying out for the Eagles to make this move. It would allow him to call much more aggressive blitz plays, with Ramsey being more than able to hold his own against some of the league’s best receivers. Just look at what he accomplished shadowing DeAndre Hopkins back in that fateful week 2 contest. Ramsey played a blinder and for what reward? Easy to see why his frustration boiled over.
In the same week, with the Eagles facing up against the Atlanta Falcons, it was a completely different story. Another of the league’s best receivers, Julio Jones, ran up the numbers in style. His stat-line of 106 yards for 2 TDs surely would not have occurred if Ramsey was patrolling the Eagles secondary.
The major stumbling block for any kind of deal to happen is the compensation. With the Eagles likely picking towards the back end of the draft, the Jags will certainly be asking for a lot more than just a 1st round pick.
A team known for taking on big, sometimes polarising characters (see Tyreek Hill), it would be no oddity to see Jalen Ramsey rock up in KC. This is all down to current HC Andy Reid who displays terrific man management skill time and time again. Most recently he was able to guide a hot-headed cornerback to play at an all-pro level, namely Marcus Peters.
Back in 2015, Peters was even named defensive rookie of the year when he led the league in interceptions. His disruption off the field proved too much ultimately, he was shipped to the Los Angeles Rams last year.
Since then, the Chiefs haven’t been able to plug the gap he left behind. Their weak secondary has been the key reason as to why they have been unable to convert their multiple playoff runs into a Super Bowl ring. With most of the contenders in the AFC bulking up on the outside, it’s never been more vital to have a premier cornerback ready to shut them down.
This is a match that makes almost too much sense. The Jaguars will then be fully aware of the Chiefs need at the position, and it will bump up the asking price suitably.
Sitting pretty at 3-0, you’d be forgiven for thinking that America’s Team has everything in place for a championship run. Looking closer, it becomes evident opposing teams are having some success in the passing game against Dallas. Thus far, they have given up 756 yards and 3 TDs on a pretty soft schedule.
Quite remarkably for a team in their position, they are yet to record a single interception this term. This stain on their otherwise impressive record will certainly soon start to rear its ugly head. With matches against the Saints, Packers and Eagles fast approaching, it’s difficult to see the Cowboys maintaining their perfect streak.
A player like Jalen Ramsey entering the fold is arguably exactly what Dallas needs to compete with their fellow NFC heavyweights. This is also a place that is no stranger to housing strong personalities. It’s a relationship that can thrive and achieve greatness, despite the difficulties that would potentially lay in wait.
Owner Jerry Jones knows he has a crop of current stars that will demand big pay checks. Adding Ramsey into mix would mean some smart cap management but also the very real danger of having a top-heavy roster – not generally a winning formula.
Another franchise sitting at 3-0, to much more of a surprise to the NFL universe. A rather tantalising week 4 contest awaits the Bills, as they look set to go blow to blow with the New England Patriots. Now just imagine the ball-hawking Jalen Ramsey daring Brady to throw the pigskin in his direction. Mouthwatering prospect.
With an already smart looking defence, the addition of Ramsey would put a bow on this neat package. It would also create a very strong pass coverage squad, pairing with current cornerbacks Levi Wallace and Tre’Davious White. The current Bills CB duo have combined for 28 tackles and 2 INT’s. Smart looking numbers with room for improvement. The sort of improvement a current Jaguars player would bring…
The chances of a deal being struck here are certainly not impossible. Buffalo have nine 2020 draft selections at their disposal along with a healthy $28 million in cap space. No question they can afford to give up some of these picks and will have the scope to pay Ramsey the salary he deserves.
A stumbling block here is the possibility of Jalen not actually wanting to play his football in Buffalo. It may seem a while ago now, but Antonio Brown refused to sign with the Bills due to their small market. Not saying Ramsey is similar to AB, but do big characters and Buffalo mix?
Maybe, just maybe, no trade will surface whatsoever. For the 2019 season at least, Jalen Ramsey will remain with the Jaguars. It’s almost a foregone conclusion he will be out of the door for 2020 and possibly his potential suitors are all prepared to wait until then.
No holdout has been threatened, so clearly some kind of relationship remains between the two parties. There is positive support from ownership. Shad Khan has stated he is willing to make Ramsey the highest paid cornerback in the league. This is a bare minimum requirement to keep him around. The overhanging question is, what more can the Jags offer him?
Ramsey is clearly in a win now mentality, he knows just how talented and dominant he can be. You’ll have to look high and low for anyone saying the Jaguars are a top 5 team in the league, or even in the AFC for that matter. So maybe this relationship is ultimately doomed to fail, barring any dramatic turns of event.
Just today, Ramsey failed to report to practice citing a sick bug. It’s almost like a school child not wanting to go to school and so they feign an illness.
Be it 2019 or 2020, Jalen Ramsey and the Jacksonville Jaguars are not a long term pairing.