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Report: MJD open to bridging gap with Jaguars

Maurice Jones-Drew AP

Tuesday’s comments from Jaguars owner Shad Khan ratcheted up the rhetoric in the team’s impasse with running back Maurice Jones-Drew without bringing things much closer to a conclusion.

Jones-Drew wasn’t happy that Khan told him it was time to run and catch the train before it leaves the station, leading to reports that MJD was open to a trade and speculation that his holdout could last into the regular season. There was no formal trade request, though, and Steve Wyche of the NFL Network reported Wednesday morning on NFL AM that the Jaguars running back remains open to making it work in Jacksonville.

“After speaking to his agent, Adisa Bakari, he’s also open to bridging what is becoming a more fractured relationship because of the comments of Khan, not only Tuesday, but late last week,” said Wyche. “The issue is who is going to extend the olive branch if there is going to be a reparation, because Jones-Drew, he is further entrenched in his holdout — he does not like the situation, the fact that Khan is discussing publicly what was supposed to be handled in private.”

The Jaguars haven’t moved an inch closer to giving Jones-Drew a new deal and Khan keeps sending messages that there won’t be any movement on that side. If he stops sending those messages publicly, it isn’t going to change the situation in regard to the contract which means that the olive branch that ends things is almost certainly going to have to come from the player at this point.

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69 Responses to “Report: MJD open to bridging gap with Jaguars”
  1. ctattles says: Aug 22, 2012 11:26 AM

    So he burned the bridge. Now he wants to rebuild it.

  2. zoxitic says: Aug 22, 2012 11:27 AM

    A one on one meeting between Khan and MJD ends this.

  3. nomoreseasontix says: Aug 22, 2012 11:28 AM

    An ill-advised holdout gone wrong…
    Fire your agent. He’s filling your head with BS… And he’s probably gonna cost you more money than he makes you in the long run.
    If not a chunk of games in the prime of your career.

  4. maddenisfordorks says: Aug 22, 2012 11:29 AM

    Welcome back MJD

  5. patfic15 says: Aug 22, 2012 11:30 AM

    You’re moving back into the 2nd round MJD.

  6. thekiller678 says: Aug 22, 2012 11:31 AM

    So I take it ESPN put out another irresponsible article saying MJD is open to trade?

  7. ppc50 says: Aug 22, 2012 11:31 AM

    Of course Jones-Drew is “willing” to bridge the gap. He has no leverage. There are 2 more years on his deal, that had a lot of upfront money, he will continue to be fined unless he shows up, and the season starts in a couple of weeks. He is a very good player, no doubt, but the Jags, most likely, won’t be a very good team this year and may be better off holding their ground. If they can get good value for him in a trade, I would do it.

  8. blowpackblow says: Aug 22, 2012 11:31 AM

    Welcome to Detroit my friend!

  9. nbaraie says: Aug 22, 2012 11:32 AM

    MJD is complaining about a contract HE SIGNED. I applaud Khan for holding his ground. Khan has the leverage here.

  10. pilonflats says: Aug 22, 2012 11:33 AM

    MJD needs to show up to work, and learn to live with the millions he’s going to make this year.

  11. KIR says: Aug 22, 2012 11:34 AM

    Contract!?! Tell that to David Garrad the Jaguars starting QB last year who was cut one week before the season to save them from paying his 6 mil a year CONtract. lol MJD’s leverage starts week one of the regular season.

  12. grndizzle says: Aug 22, 2012 11:35 AM

    I usually side with the player during holdouts, but I’ve got to stick with management on this one. He has a new boss, and a new coach, if he wants a raise he should show up for work and let them see if he’s worth it.

  13. Ghost Rat says: Aug 22, 2012 11:35 AM

    This situation is of his own making; he took a front loaded contract and is now grumbling about the money he is making? Get over yourself, dude.

  14. ballersgonnaball says: Aug 22, 2012 11:35 AM

    Well, that was quick. It’s obvious MJD wants to play. Dude is a genuine football player who has always had a chip on his shoulder- he needs to be out there. Just report to camp and help this team win.

  15. jetstizzi85 says: Aug 22, 2012 11:37 AM

    I guess if you are going to give MJD credit for something its that he isnt speaking to the media about this….OUCH

  16. jamaltimore says: Aug 22, 2012 11:37 AM

    Funny, you were the best rb in the league and your team stunk. Now your holding out and the new owner says, Ok, we’ll figure out how to get on without you or honor your contract. It’s not like JJ have this legacy of success with MJD.

  17. joetoronto says: Aug 22, 2012 11:38 AM

    Don’t do it, MJD. This is your chance to get out of Dodge.

    Hang in there.

  18. philipdebin says: Aug 22, 2012 11:38 AM

    MJD, your agent is terrible. First of all, you should not have held out with 2 years left on your deal, it wasn’t and isn’t going to get you anymore money. Now, backing off the I want to be traded stance is equally as silly. You’ve dug in this far, you might has well request a trade. The notion that Kahn will refuse a trade because he won’t “cave” is ridiculous. If they can find a suitable partner (Jets), they will gladly trade you. This regime could care less about appearances (they drafted Alualu, hired Mularkey as HC, drafted a punter in round 3). The current management cares ONLY about improving the team. If they can get a second rounder for you, they will take it. They don’t need you, and Gene Smith LOVES draft picks. You will get your new contract from your new team. (It will probably be a short contract, maybe 3 years). There are 32 teams in the NFL, and you were the leading rusher last year on a garbage team with no passing game. Do you honestly think that not 1 out of 32 teams will fall in love? There’s going to be a team to make the deal… there’s ALWAYS at least one team (Redskins) to make a deal for a player they like, no matter how dumb. Stand your ground, demand a trade and get your money… and fire your agent. If he’s been behind your moves this offseason, then he’s giving you bad advice every step of the way.
    -This is coming from a Jags fan BTW.

  19. voiceofreasonsays says: Aug 22, 2012 11:38 AM

    No MJD. Don’t budge or settle. If you do, I will lose all respect for you!

  20. realitypolice says: Aug 22, 2012 11:39 AM

    Here’s how you bridge the gap MJD- come to camp. Jags- tell MJD that you will agree to take a look at extending him at the end of the season.

    Listen, I am NOT one of those guys who thinks no one should ever hold out. I understand why guys don’t want to go into the last year of their contract with no certainty that they will be taken care of if something happens to them in a contract year.

    But holding out with two years left is an entirely different story, in my opinion.

  21. steelerfanforlife says: Aug 22, 2012 11:39 AM

    Probably already been said but I’m with MJD on this one. He’s more than 50% of the Jags offense and he’s out performed his current contract. He would have been cut if he didn’t perform so there is no loyalty in “honoring” a contract.
    Conspiracy Theory: Khan wants this team to stink so no one goes to the games and he has an excuse to move the team to L.A…..

  22. bo1210 says: Aug 22, 2012 11:40 AM

    If by “bridging the gap,” you mean “signing what was originally offered,” that’s good news for the Jags.

  23. hardate says: Aug 22, 2012 11:44 AM

    Rashad Jennings (currently running with the ones) had the same agent and dropped them in the past week or two…coincidence? I think not.

  24. philipdebin says: Aug 22, 2012 11:45 AM

    If he is coming back, I’m glad I traded Rashad Jennings this morning and got something for him while he was hot…

  25. tannethrill says: Aug 22, 2012 11:45 AM

    Ah, my fantasy gamble will pay off.

  26. charliewade says: Aug 22, 2012 11:46 AM

    Bridging a gap? What gap?

    MJD has no alternative than to show up and play out his contract. He has no leverage. That team is not going anywhere soon and weren’t drawing well at the gate with him anyway. So what incentive do they have to do anything but sit back and wait for him to inevitably show up?

    Ain’t personal, MJD; it’s just business.

    And if you stop and think about it in those terms, MJD, you’d see that holding out is simply costing you money and netting you nothing new.

  27. keeppounding says: Aug 22, 2012 11:48 AM

    Their record will be the same with or without MJD.

  28. bigfranky75 says: Aug 22, 2012 11:51 AM

    Well of course he is! Its amazing how quickly a lack of options will change someone’s mind! He had no other choice.

    Now go get richer than 99.999% of the fans for playing a frigging game you spoiled, greedy pig!

  29. deadeye says: Aug 22, 2012 11:51 AM

    These agents are scumbags. They whisper all this garbage in the ear of their client to establish feelings of being underpaid and unappreciated.

    Drew Rosenhaus did the same thing years ago with all of his elite WR clients. He managed to get them all to hold out for more money. I think it was Philadelphia that finally stood up to him by refusing to renegotiate.

    At any rate, MJD would have been better off showing up on time. Now he’ll have to return with his tail between his legs.

  30. jimmypx says: Aug 22, 2012 11:53 AM

    The Jags gave MJD a front loaded contract a few years ago that he happily signed and took the money. Now that he is on the back end of that deal, he’s whining. He still has 2 years left on his deal and is still one of the top 10 highest paid RBs in the NFL. If Khan gave in to him then every clown on the team would be hitting him up for more money all of the time. A contract is a contract and a deal is a deal. MJD should go to camp and suck it up and take his millions for the year.

  31. kahnsbushymustache says: Aug 22, 2012 11:54 AM

    steelerfanforlife says:
    Aug 22, 2012 11:39 AM
    Probably already been said but I’m with MJD on this one. He’s more than 50% of the Jags offense and he’s out performed his current contract.

    ————————————————
    MJD’s contract (like most) was front-loaded. He’s upset about the $9M he is due over the final two years, but you don’t hear him complaining about the $21.8M he received in the first two…

  32. niubears says: Aug 22, 2012 11:59 AM

    So, you think he’ll still be wearing that “C” on his uni this season?

  33. godofwine330 says: Aug 22, 2012 12:00 PM

    MJD has handled this as teams wish and talk about that a player should. It is always talked about by clubs, “We will not negotiate through the media” and what does Khan do, exactly that.

    This is sad the direction things turned. It seems Khan is willing to sit on MJD just because he can. It sucks to be an NFL running back nowadays if you didn’t get drafted high in the first round.

  34. getyourownname says: Aug 22, 2012 12:01 PM

    You don’t have to be on players’ or management’s side to understand that if the team backs down, every other player will know they can do the same thing, and that management has no interest in creating that atmosphere.

  35. sorozco says: Aug 22, 2012 12:03 PM

    This situation was public the second MJD started holding out from camp. This whole process might change if they forced agents into fixed pay.

  36. coltsluckdynasty says: Aug 22, 2012 12:06 PM

    Ready to bridge the gap huh? Meaning more like he knows his bluff was called, realized that it’s actually a privilege to play in the nfl, and hope he can return to the team without paying any fines. You may be the rushing champ, on a team that has to run you, because they haven’t had any weapons for a while. Now that they have some weapons, rashad Jennings is capable of filling in, you are scared, and should be. I hope they hold you to your fines, and let you ride the bench for about 2 weeks to see if you are dedicated. Don’t pull a DeSean Jackson either, play your game, and you will get rewarded. Hopefully with a franchise tag for another 2 years.

  37. cowboyz4life says: Aug 22, 2012 12:10 PM

    MJD deserves a new contract…he has outplayed this one by far!! Oh and to you people screaming “he signed the contract he has”. Know that Wayne Weaver game him the front-loaded contract with a promise to restructure it if/when he played well. Khan wants this time to suck so bad they have no other choice to move to LA. I wish you people commenting ACTUALLY watched and understood how football works. On and off the field

  38. jefferee101 says: Aug 22, 2012 12:13 PM

    @KIR

    MJD’s leverage may begin week one, but it will be trivial leverage if Jennings maintains his career 5.4 YPC.

  39. santolonius says: Aug 22, 2012 12:14 PM

    MJD has at most 5 years left in the league. unless khan is a pushover, holding out is absurd. and khan is not a pushover. so what is the purpose of giving your competition at running back free snaps in camp? MJD has misjudged khan and received profoundly bad advice from his agent – an agent who stood to benefit if MJD won his holdout and who lose comparatively little when the holdout inevitably fails.

  40. thetruth845 says: Aug 22, 2012 12:32 PM

    getyourownname says:
    Aug 22, 2012 12:01 PM
    You don’t have to be on players’ or management’s side to understand that if the team backs down, every other player will know they can do the same thing, and that management has no interest in creating that atmosphere.

    ——————————————————————————————————–

    I don’t disagree but I don’t fault MJD for wanting more money. He obviously deserves it and his earning window is closing with every hit. Owners can decide they no longer want a player and simply cut him ending his contract. Players don’t have that kind of leverage. Its unfortunate that the business playing field is not level. I think a lot of players would take a pay cut from their “market value” if the money was guaranteed. Its not like owners cant take out insurance policies on the players to protect lost revenue from injuries.

  41. mowerguyjags says: Aug 22, 2012 12:39 PM

    It became public when he didn’t show for camp.

    The upfront money MJD signed when he was Fred’s backup clouded the fact the contract was too long, had no incentives for him and was at least one year too long.

  42. shackdelrio says: Aug 22, 2012 12:42 PM

    “thetruth845 says:
    Aug 22, 2012 12:32 PM
    Owners can decide they no longer want a player and simply cut him ending his contract. Players don’t have that kind of leverage.”

    Sure they do. The NFLPA agreed to have the contracts structured in the way that they are structured. That is why it is all on the guaranteed money. Owners “honor the contract” by paying the player their guaranteed money but they have every right to terminate the contract at any time. If the players don’t like it, they can go on strike. The owners are playing by the rules. The only person not honoring the contract in this situation is MJD and that is why the team is able to fine him if they choose to do so.

  43. tharoostah says: Aug 22, 2012 12:46 PM

    THIS JUST IN: Sources are now telling me that MJD isn’t expected to return until Wednesday. He plans on waiting at Gamestop until midnight Tuesday morning when the game is released. Then he wants to get 24 hours logged on the new game before returning to camp. A source close to the situation is telling me that MJD believes he could be the NFLs rushing champ again, be ranked top 10 in Madden, and win his fantasy league.

  44. grndizzle says: Aug 22, 2012 12:51 PM

    @Cowboyz4life- You’re right about one thing. Wayne Weaver gave him that contract and empty promise.

    Problem is, he has a new boss and coaching staff, so if he wants a raise he should show up for work and show them that he deserves one.

    Someone like you that knows football so well, should know what the NFL stands for- NOT FOR LONG.

  45. tfd4999 says: Aug 22, 2012 12:51 PM

    There are teams that need him. He is a GREAT running back. Once upon a time he was a GREAT kick returner, too. The problem is, for the Jaguars, he just isn’t that valuable. They’re going to contend or not on the arm of Gabbert and the defense, and there isn’t much dropoff to Jennings, so they don’t really need him. They should trade him to a team that does need him, and will pay him (the Jets, the Bills, and the Bengals would all be much better with him). They should ask for a 1st round pick, though

  46. jpmelon says: Aug 22, 2012 12:59 PM

    This is the problem with giving up-front money. Even though, financially, it remains in the players best interest to take the cash up front; the player is undoubtedly going to feel more wealthy than he really is up-front, and feel like his later paychecks aren’t as big as they should be.

  47. lilrob10201 says: Aug 22, 2012 1:02 PM

    MJD has been one of the most consistent backs in the league and deserves to get paid.

  48. scotchrocks says: Aug 22, 2012 1:08 PM

    I’m not knocking him for attempting to get more money while he can. And if it doesn’t work, it costs him nothing.

  49. FinFan68 says: Aug 22, 2012 1:18 PM

    MJD has not “outplayed his contract”. He is not in his rookie deal. He was given a new contract 2 years before it was due. That contract paid him very well (top 5 at least) before he had even proven himself as a workhorse/feature back. That contract was front-loaded so MJD has already been paid some of the money he has yet to earn this year.

    MJD and many fans are just looking at what he is due this year and not much else (conveniently forgetting what he has already been paid for this year). Players understand that they can be cut for underperforming. Frontloaded contracts are simply an insurance policy/peace of mind for the players in case they can’t live up to their end of the bargain and wind up getting cut. Guys like MJD are treating that as “extra” or “free” money that has nothing to do with the “right now” in the later years of the contract. The team fully expects the player to be productive throughout the term of the contract and pays them accordingly. Players see that somebody else got a better deal from a different team and want to change their deal so they feel respected. That’s hogwash. He made a deal. There was no slot system that mandated specific terms. He chose that deal and now want to exploit the team. I hope the Jags continue with their current stance. MJD should either show up and strap on a helmet or shut up and watch the games from his couch.

    I think the team needs to demand the $30,000 daily fines are paid before he is allowed to step on the field if/when he finally comes back or prior to any trade he tries to work out. Too bad there is nothing that says they are due on a weekly basis.

  50. getyourownname says: Aug 22, 2012 1:34 PM

    thetruth845 says:
    Aug 22, 2012 12:32 PM
    Its not like owners cant take out insurance policies on the players to protect lost revenue from injuries.
    **************************
    Maybe, depends on whether an insurer is willing to write such a policy, the cost of coverage, and the amount of benefit the insurer is willing to pay. BUT – the real issue is the team can’t fix the salary cap hit which limits their ability to bring in replacement players for an injured one.

    A player is perfectly within his rights to negotiate whatever salary, and upfront or guarantee amount, as he wants. But the amount of guarantee is always going to affect the total salary amount (since guarantee affects salary cap hit AND has to reflect the certainty of later payment (i.e., whether team can get out of contract by cutting a player). Player accepts the final guarantee knowing the total contract amount is possibly lower. This is basic contract negotiation that applies to any contract, not just NFl players.

    Anyway, the point is not whether or not he is “worth” more, he’s worth whatever someone is willing to pay. The real point is – what are long-term consequences to team of deciding to pay more, now?

  51. grndizzle says: Aug 22, 2012 1:39 PM

    The other issue working against him are the Jags haven’t made the playoffs since he became their feature back.

    I know he put up a lot of yards last year, but that didn’t translate into wins. Every bad team has someone that puts up big numbers.

  52. greenbay4ever says: Aug 22, 2012 1:41 PM

    Get out of Jacksonville. I would hate to see another running back stuck on a bad team for his career. Go to Greenbay where you have a chance to win a title.

  53. bullcharger says: Aug 22, 2012 2:07 PM

    If Khan is actually willing to move ahead without MJD (even if the Jags stink it up) then MJD has no leverage at all. He’ll have to come back and play out his contract.

    Running back’s aren’t quite what they used to be in this league, so this isn’t so far fetched.

  54. punkyqb says: Aug 22, 2012 2:52 PM

    getyourownname says:
    Aug 22, 2012 12:01 PM
    You don’t have to be on players’ or management’s side to understand that if the team backs down, every other player will know they can do the same thing, and that management has no interest in creating that atmosphere.

    ——————————————————————————————————–

    I don’t disagree but I don’t fault MJD for wanting more money. He obviously deserves it and his earning window is closing with every hit. Owners can decide they no longer want a player and simply cut him ending his contract. Players don’t have that kind of leverage. Its unfortunate that the business playing field is not level. I think a lot of players would take a pay cut from their “market value” if the money was guaranteed. Its not like owners cant take out insurance policies on the players to protect lost revenue from injuries.
    ____________________________________
    The players coming into the league know this already. And if they do not want to play by those rules they should get a normal job like the rest of us
    and hope that possibly they will be able to afford going to a game once a year because it cost so much because of these guys.

  55. paul82461 says: Aug 22, 2012 2:53 PM

    All thses athletes always want long term contracts yet most are unwilling to fulfill them. Dont sign it if you wont honor it. Suck it up MJD.

  56. bangitfootball says: Aug 22, 2012 3:00 PM

    Dont trade him. Let him stew. MJD is a greedy little me first self promoting man boy. Fine him and hold back the game checks. Holding out with 2 years left in a hugely front loaded contract is selfish.

  57. deedee109 says: Aug 22, 2012 3:10 PM

    Khan need to stop running off at the mouth and conduct himself in a professional manner. His recent comments are creating undue drama. MJD has conducted himself in a professionally manner his entire career on and off the field…how we forget. MDJ has kept us in the spotlight the last few years as we had no other exciting players. We need MDJ to enhance the new up and coming weapons like Gabbert, Blackmon and Mincey . I want players that will help us win and Drew will do just that. The other two RB’s are good but do not have the power legs/thighs that MDJ have to move the chains. Most of the fan base own a Jersey with #32…let’s not disappointment your fan base Khan. Instead, work out a deal so we can play football and WIN! Go Jags!

  58. fmwarner says: Aug 22, 2012 3:42 PM

    I don’t understand all the “pay the man” or “he’s earned a new contract” posts. The man WAS paid. He GOT his new contract. Now he just doesn’t feel like fulfilling it because all the money was frontloaded and other backs have signed richer deals in the meantime. If you want your salary bumped up every time another running back signs a big deal, negotiate it into your contract. Otherwise, shut up and go to work earning that money you were already paid.

  59. cliffordc05 says: Aug 22, 2012 3:57 PM

    This clown has two years left on a front loaded contract and now he is offering to extend an olive branch!! I am sure the team would prefer that he remain pissed off but report to camp and honor that agreement.

  60. rameyag says: Aug 22, 2012 3:57 PM

    I really like MJD and understand why he is holding out for more money and think, to some degree, his team should renegotiated, but the Steelers’ policy of “We’d love to have you, but your under contract and we’ll move on with or without you” seems to have worked for that franchise and it is hard to disagree with a team taking that position.

  61. rollteal says: Aug 22, 2012 4:31 PM

    He played a hand of poker with shad and lost game over now it’s time to report to the team and get on board.

  62. nashwaakkidd says: Aug 22, 2012 4:48 PM

    sorry dude, you aren’t gonna win this one. maybe at the start of NEXT season this would work, but new owner is going to put his foot down fer sure.! and good on him. you took the upfront money , now fire the idiot agent, get back in there , have a 15oo yard season and cash in 2013. khan wants to set example, don’t let it be you

  63. ripster65 says: Aug 22, 2012 5:02 PM

    I’m sure he is! He has no other choice.

  64. chasekerion4 says: Aug 22, 2012 5:22 PM

    It always cracks me up when fans can’t comprehend the reality that pro sports is a business.

    And in business there are employers and employees.

    The employer can always terminate the employee. Always have been able to. Contracts are there to protect the employers who bear the financial risk of their business’s (the team’s) success.

    Get to work, chump.

  65. scotchrocks says: Aug 22, 2012 5:38 PM

    I love it when someone says that someone else doesn’t deserve the right to ask and/or fight for more money.

    If MJD thinks he deserves more money, more power to him. I can appreciate that Khan doesn’t want to be dictated to, but it seems to me that he would be interested in assuring he’s able to put the best product he can on the field, especially since he already can’t sell seats.

  66. peytonsneck18 says: Aug 22, 2012 5:49 PM

    Regardless Jags will STINK!!!!

  67. mantanque says: Aug 22, 2012 5:57 PM

    Reminds me of why Barry Sanders and Jim Brown quit.

    Jags did nothing last year, but put the entire team on his back, and promise the same thing this year.

    Get knocked around for the next 2 years then see who else wants you…

    My advice to MO. Take a season off, train.. and heal…

  68. deadeye says: Aug 22, 2012 6:00 PM

    “They should trade him to a team that does need him, and will pay him (the Jets, the Bills, and the Bengals would all be much better with him). They should ask for a 1st round pick, though”

    =============================

    @tfd4999

    There is no way on God’s green Earth that anyone gives up a first round pick for MJD. It’s not that he hasn’t been excellent, he has. It’s that he’s been in the league for seven years and has two more good seasons left. It’s that he plays RB, which is not nearly as valuable in today’s NFL. The league is built around QBs and the passing game, not the running game.

    MJD would fetch about a fourth rounder, maybe a third if someone was depserate to compete this season.

  69. jeffblast36 says: Aug 22, 2012 7:00 PM

    That a boy KHAN hold your ground.It’s time for some owner to stand up to these greedy players who could care less about the fans who buy tickets.If owners continue to give in fan will not be able to buy tickets.Make these players live up to contracts they sign.They(players) sign contracts then have a good year then want more,when they get it and have a bad year they still keep the money and do not want to give anything back.So hold the line MR KHAN.

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