Jaguars say they expect Maurice Jones-Drew to honor his contract

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Jaguars running back Maurice Jones-Drew wants a new contract, but the team doesn’t sound particularly interested in giving it to him.

Jaguars General Manager Gene Smith told Tania Ganguli of the Florida Times-Union that the Jaguars have no plans to give Jones-Drew a new deal.

“He has expressed that he would like to renegotiate and we have expressed, again, that we feel he has a contract with two years left and we expect him to fulfill those obligations,” Smith said.

The five-year, $31 million contract that Jones-Drew signed before the 2009 season pays him $4.45 million this year and $4.95 million last year. That’s relatively low for a guy who just led the league in rushing last year and who is by far the best offensive player on the team, but the reality in the NFL these days is that teams just aren’t eager to give big money to running backs, especially running backs who still have two years left on their current contracts.

This situation could get even more interesting if Jones-Drew fails to show up for the team’s mandatory minicamp, which begins on Tuesday. If Jones-Drew skips the full three-day minicamp, the Jaguars can fine him $63,000. Smith said Jaguars coach Mike Mularkey would be the one to decide if the Jaguars do, in fact, dock Jones-Drew’s pay.

“That’s a decision that certainly is the head coach’s decision,” Smith said of fining Jones-Drew. “And I would support that.”

Which means that Jones-Drew, who is unhappy to be making $4.45 million this year, may see his 2012 pay reduced to $4.387 million by the end of this week.

31 responses to “Jaguars say they expect Maurice Jones-Drew to honor his contract

  1. MJD has got way too many miles on his body to expect a new contract. After watching what Chris Johnson did after his mega contract. GMs will not be giving many RBs big extensions unless they are pretty young and without a lot of wear and tear (see Shady McCoy). It’s simply too easy to replace a RB with a young guy or a committee now a days.

  2. For the people that work, here is a question for you. If you do not work up to the standards that your employers expect, you will get fired, right? But if you exceed expectations and are a highly valuable asset to your employer, you expect to be rewarded with a pay raise, right? It’s just like that in professional sports. $4.95M is not a top RB salary.

    He is a top RB and is a complete back. Pay the man. When you talk about the Jaguars, you talk about 3 things….

    1. How well MJD is doing
    2. How crappy Gabbart is
    3. If they will put a tarp on the upper parts of the 100 levels on top of the 300 levels.

    The latter 2 are not positive……

  3. Thank God the Jags are sticking it to MJD. He is just 2 years into the contract that he was crying for. Now it’s not good enough for him? Does he forget all the bonuses he got up front?

    Fine MJD as much as you can and make him regret ever crying to the media about his “poor poor contract”.

  4. Jennings is more than capable to carry the rock. Several team sources said he has the best hands on team. As Prisco says, sooner this is Blaine’s team the better our record will be.

  5. Since he has 2 years left I think he should honor it, but playing out his contract has shown Matt Forte that the Saints are the only ones that have paid for performance program..

  6. pooflingingmonkey says:
    Jun 11, 2012 2:43 PM
    Poor Jag Fans. What a dysfunctional team.

    If dysfunctional is paying an aging running back top salary, then I would hate to see your definition of functional is.

    Care to enlighten us?

  7. Its important to note that when signed, this contract initially put MJD among the top RB’s and had a large signing bonus.

    The team extended him and paid him well before his rookie contract ended. Its not like he is still on his rookie deal, or being asked to sign a franchise tender.

  8. So players don’t want to play under the franchise tag because they want a long term deal. Then when they get the long term deal they want a new one after the upfront money runs out. If you only want a 2-3 year contract then only ask for one.

  9. 2 years left on a contract where he received a $9 mil signing bonus, had $17.5 mil guaranteed, and can make $1.8 mil in incentives. Play this year, negotiate next year. Either way there’s over $9 mil due the next two years. No tears shed here. Man up.

  10. The team holds all the cards. He has two years left on his deal. He’ll be with the team when the game checks start getting cut.

  11. gadzod says:Jun 11, 2012 2:33 PM

    For the people that work, here is a question for you. If you do not work up to the standards that your employers expect, you will get fired, right? But if you exceed expectations and are a highly valuable asset to your employer, you expect to be rewarded with a pay raise, right? It’s just like that in professional sports. $4.95M is not a top RB salary

    That’s not the same. When an average joe works..he works typically on either an hourly or annual payscale possilbe earning a raise or bonus based on production. They do not sign a contract that says will give them x amount of money for x amount of years and then be able to complain about it in order to get a bigger payday.

  12. gadzod, most of us do not have careers that can end based on one 5 second sequence resulting in injury nor do our jobs require a specific and very high level of physical ability which begins to deteriorate with age and the physical abuse a NFL RB takes.

    I like MJD as a player but if I’m the Jags (or any other NFL GM) it’s simply bad business to give him a new contract. The Jags aren’t exactly a “contenders” and are blacked out half the time anyway so if he holds out and misses games, it’s really not going to matter. Plus he’ll only cost himself money as he’ll miss game checks and be fined. He has no leverage.

    Not player hating, just keeping it real.

  13. you may feel you deserve a raise when you do good at your job but that does not mean you will get one. unless you have a better paying one line up you still report to work everyday or they get rid of you good worker or not. once again you the contracts are not guaranteed people ignore the signing bonus he got when he signed his deal which is guaranteed. not sure what he got but am pretty sure it was not chump change so in addition to that he gets 4.5 million so he is just going to have to suck it up and make do with 4.5 million dollars. pass the colledtion plate for the “poor under paid millionaire” on your own,he and other overpaid crybabies get no sympathy from me.

  14. gadzod,
    MJD is a great running back, some would say elite, but no team in their right mind would re-negotiate with a running back with as much mileage as Drew with 2 years still left on his contract. Re-doing his contract would be something to talk about after this season is over, or even at the beginning of the next. MJD signed the contract, now be a man and fulfill your obligation to the team. Yes he is one of the top backs and most of the Jags O, but that is what will make his price go up for the next contract. Running backs are not worth what they used to be, back before teams became pass happy. There is a ton of talent at the position throughout the league.

  15. Rodgers419,

    You can point to any player in the league and say…”what would football be like without them?!”

    Guess what, football will still go on and the team will be on the field come sunday. Point is the individual player needs football…football doesnt need them.

    Plus imagine if they (jaguars) replaced mjd with a rookie 3rd round rb. He may get half or two-thirds the products of mjd? The jags win total might not be effected, or go down from 4 to 2 or 5 to 3. Not exactly equal leverage…

  16. That’s pretty rich coming from a guy who just released Aaron Kampman for not living up to his contract.

  17. The Jags did give him a new contract before his rookie contract was up. He got $4.1M in 2009 instead of the 500k from his rookie contract.

    If he would have played out the contract for one more year at a lower salary, he could have got 7M or so a year for 4 years. That would have put him in the top 5 RB salary wise right now. **However** doing that would have actually netted *less money*. He would have got $28M to $29M by playing out the contract versus the $31M he got by re-upping early.

    So he’s not really underpaid, he just took an advance in 2009.

  18. Does anyone have proof of any top player in the NFL every having to actually pay their “fines” for missing work? I didn’t think so. It’s a spineless rule for the back end of the roster.

  19. gadzod says: Jun 11, 2012 2:33 PM

    For the people that work, here is a question for you. If you do not work up to the standards that your employers expect, you will get fired, right? But if you exceed expectations and are a highly valuable asset to your employer, you expect to be rewarded with a pay raise, right?

    The problem with your theory is that people that work do not normally sign contracts. If they did it would be different. But pros sign contracts for a certain amount of years and a certain salary. If they play poorly do you think the team should reduce their salary? I don’t think so, and neither does the player that plays poorly.

  20. Normally I side with the player in these cases because I think it’s a joke when a team tells you to honor your contract but they’ll drop you in a heartbeat if your production starts to dip or you cost to much.

    In this case with MJD you have 2 years left on a contract and you should at least play one more season on it before crying for a new one. If you don’t like the terms of the contract either don’t sign it or sign a shorter deal if you think you’ll be worth more later.

    It’s tough because I understand MJD wants to maximize his value considering his position but I can completely understand the Jaguars not wanting to pay long term money on a ride with a lot of miles on it.

  21. wasn’t MJD the person carrying the team last season while your QB was busy figuring out how to play the game and ducking from invisible defenders?

  22. How come NFL teams do not have to honor the players contract when they cut a player because they no longer want to pay his salary?

  23. Trade scenario for the Jags: Y’all re-do the MJD contract giving him about $7 mil per the next 2 years (a nice pay raise) and trade him to the Atlanta Falcons in exchange for RB Michael Turner & 2 conditional draft picks. The problem will be taken off your hands.

  24. kingcarlbanks says: Jun 11, 2012 5:42 PM

    MJD should get a new contract. It’s not like the Jags offense has any other players who scare defenses..
    This is the root of the problem here.

    If he wasn’t the only good player on the team, it would be a different story.

    I think they have to pay him.

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