- Mike DiRocco, ESPN Staff Writer
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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Maurice Jones-Drew and Paul Posluszny both said Friday they appreciated general manager Dave Caldwell taking the time to speak with them and reassure them they were not going to be traded.
Caldwell traded left tackle Eugene Monroe to Baltimore on Tuesday night, and there was speculation that other veterans would be moved as part of a fire sale to stockpile draft picks to rebuild the franchise. But Caldwell met with them Thursday and told them they weren't going anywhere.
Caldwell revealed the meeting after open locker room Thursday.
"It meant a lot to know your GM and your head coach think that much of you to sit you down," said Jones-Drew, who is in the final year of his contract and is being paid $4.95 million. "Obviously you hear a bunch of talk all the time so it was good to sit down and kind of clear the airways and just get back to football and playing the game that we want to play well and that I love."
Posluszny is in the third year of a six-year, $45 million contract and is scheduled to make $8.5 million next season and $9.5 million in 2015. He is second in the NFL with 40 tackles.
"It was reassuring to hear from the head man that he wants me to be a part of the organization and not to worry about anything that I hear or read concerning trades," Posluszny said. "Did it cross my mind? Yeah. Was I overly concerned? It's one of those things, we can speculate all day about it but you can't really worry about it too much."
Caldwell said the Monroe trade, which netted the Jaguars fourth- and fifth-round picks in the 2014 draft, grew out of casual conversations with Ravens officials. One of the reasons he was willing to make the trade was that the Jaguars had a player who could slide into Monroe's spot. Luke Joeckel, whom the team had taken with the No. 2 overall pick last April, had been working at right tackle all season but was considered the team's left tackle of the future.
The future begins Sunday against the Rams in St. Louis.
"It's hard to make a trade in-season," Caldwell said. "Things really have to align the right way. You have to have a buyer, you have to have a seller, a team has to have salary cap space, a team has to be willing to part with their player, and it's not like it's easy to just fill in. So when you have a guy like Luke Joeckel that we can fill in at left tackle, that helps us a lot.
"So we look at it as we got a first round pick as a left tackle and a four and a five this year coming up with the trade."