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Jacksonville Jaguars 2022 free-agency outlook

The Jaguars head into 2022 free agency coming off a 3-14 season. We break down their free agents, cap space, and more.

NFL: Jacksonville Jaguars at Minnesota Vikings Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

From the jump, the 2021 Jacksonville Jaguars looked like an abject disaster. Urban Meyer, the decorated coach from the collegiate ranks tabbed to oversee the Jaguars’ rebirth, made misstep after misstep on his way to a December firing. Meanwhile, No. 1 overall selection Trevor Lawrence, considered a consensus generational quarterback prospect, failed to develop under Meyer’s watch.

The Jaguars struggled in nearly every facet of the game. Outside of running back James Robinson, the offense looked lifeless virtually the entire season. Even Robinson couldn’t avoid falling into the black hole of optimism at the center of Jacksonville, rupturing his Achilles tendon in Week 16. That injury marked the second season-ender suffered by a Jaguars running back following first-round pick Travis Etienne’s ACL tear during the preseason. On the other side of the ball, the team couldn’t have performed much worse. The defense finished 31st in Football Outsiders’ DVOA, ranking ahead of only the New York Jets.

While last season went exceptionally poorly for the Jaguars, their future still remains somewhat promising. Meyer’s best efforts didn’t diminish Lawrence’s long-term potential and the team enters the offseason with the second-most salary cap space in the league.

Last season’s salary cap number dropped to $182.5 million as the league dealt with the pandemic, but the 2022 cap will rebound to $208 million, according to Over The Cap. That increase should loosen a few team pocketbooks this offseason.

Franchise- and transition-tag possibilities

Wide receiver D.J. Chark, probably the biggest name among the Jaguars’ pending free agents, seems the most likely candidate for the franchise tag on the roster. The 26-year-old wideout had solid campaigns in 2019 and 2020, recording 126 receptions for 1,714 yards and 13 touchdowns over that stretch. However, injuries limited him to just four games this past season, clouding his future in Jacksonville. Given the options potentially available in free agency and the draft, the Jaguars might let Chark test the market rather than use an expensive tag.

A year ago, the Jaguars applied the franchise tag to left tackle Cam Robinson in hopes of securing capable offensive-line play for Lawrence. The protection around the rookie signal-caller never stabilized in 2021, but Robinson didn’t prove to be the weak link, allowing just one sack and 31 total pressures in 14 starts, according to Pro Football Focus. The front office has the option to tag Robinson again, but that seems unlikely given the roughly $16.5 million cost.

Salary cap

Estimated 2022 cap space: $55.2 million (as of Feb. 17)

Notable unrestricted free agents

Jacksonville Jaguars 2022 UFAs

Player Pos. 2021 Team Snaps Age 2022 Team
Player Pos. 2021 Team Snaps Age 2022 Team
Andrew Norwell LG Jaguars 99.40% 31
Cam Robinson LT Jaguars 79.00% 27
Damien Wilson LB Jaguars 78.20% 29
Tyler Shatley C Jaguars 49.10% 31
Laquon Treadwell WR Jaguars 44.70% 27
Jihad Ward EDGE Jaguars 41.20% 28
Adam Gotsis EDGE Jaguars 39.90% 30
Nevin Lawson CB Jaguars 29.30% 31
Taven Bryan IDL Jaguars 27.00% 26
Tavon Austin WR Jaguars 26.50% 32
James O'Shaughnessy TE Jaguars 26.40% 30
Tre Herndon CB Jaguars 18.70% 26
A.J. Cann RG Jaguars 18.30% 31
Jacob Hollister TE Jaguars 16.00% 29
D.J. Chark WR Jaguars 15.60% 26
Will Richardson RT Jaguars 12.40% 26
Lerentee McCray EDGE Jaguars 6.50% 32
Jaydon Mickens WR Jaguars 2.20% 28
JK Scott P Jaguars 1.40% 26
Tyrell Adams LB Jaguars 0.10% 30