With Jaguars running back Maurice Jones-Drew having no leverage to force a new contract, the next step likely will be to try to force a trade.
The first hint came Tuesday, when Adam Schefter of ESPN reported that Jones-Drew would be open to a trade not long after owner Shahid Khan called the player out. That’s likely a trial balloon, a toe in the water from the Jones-Drew camp aimed at gauging fan, media, and most importantly ownership reaction to the possibility.
And it’s probably going to fail, in every way possible. Owner Shahid Khan likely won’t trade him, the media likely won’t demand that Khan cave, and the fans will potentially turn on the player.
Besides, some other team would have to be willing to pay Jones-Drew whatever he wants, and also to give the Jaguars whatever it would take to get them to trade him.
While it would make sense for the Jaguars to get what they can if Jones-Drew were planning to pull a Carson Palmer and never play for the Jaguars again, trading the player to a team that will give him what he wants contractually could be viewed as giving in to his demands. And that’s why it won’t be a surprise if Khan, who already has been talking tough about the situation, makes it very clear very soon that there will be no trade.
Though I’ll defer a full analysis of how the situation got to this point to Wednesday’s PFT Live, Khan has no inclination to cave. If Khan thinks that trading Jones-Drew equates to caving, there’s no way Jones-Drew ever gets traded, even if there’s a team that will give both the player and the Jags what it would take to get a deal done.