GM says Jags not holding fire sale
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- The Jacksonville Jaguars are not conducting a fire sale.
General manager David Caldwell said Thursday that the team's trade of left tackle Eugene Monroe to Baltimore for draft picks does not mean he's looking to unload other players.
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In fact, Caldwell was emphatic that he's not going to trade anyone on the roster now and singled out running back Maurice Jones-Drew and linebacker Paul Posluszny, two of the veterans subject to the most trade speculation.
"I had good talks with Poz and Mojo today, and they're not going anywhere," Caldwell said. "We feel good about those guys being here. Nor do they want to go anywhere. They're part of this team, and we're excited about having them a part of this team."
Jones-Drew is in the final year of his contract and is being paid $4.95 million. He has rushed for only 138 yards in four games (2.4 yards per carry). 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.
Lewis has taken part in just two plays this season because of a calf injury. He is in the third year of a five-year, $35 million contact. He is being paid $4.2 million this season, and his salary escalates to $5.75 million and $8.25 million in the final two years. Nwaneri is in the fourth year of a six-year, $25 million contract. He will make $3.775 million this year and the next two years.
Caldwell said he was not actively shopping Monroe and instead got a call from the Ravens. The deal got done quickly, and the Jaguars received a fourth- and fifth-round pick in next year's draft. That gives the Jaguars 10 total picks, which helps Caldwell's plan of rebuilding the franchise through the draft instead of trying to sign key players in free agency.
"Ten picks is good," Caldwell said. "Obviously it's better than seven, eight or nine, but you'd like to have as many as you can get to build that because you can trade for future picks. Sometimes you can take a 4 [fourth-round pick] and turn it into a future 3 and take a future 3 and turn it into a future 2, and eventually you end up with two 1s at some point. It gives you a lot of flexibility.
"They always say cash is king, and in the NFL, draft picks are kind of your cash."
Even though the Jaguars (0-4) likely could get more for Jones-Drew, Posluszny, Lewis or Nwaneri, Caldwell is standing firm that they're staying put.
"We'll always answer our phone," he said. "Trades are difficult to do in the season, and we have no intention of trading anybody on our roster right now."