Jaguars drop former first-round pick Leonard Fournette less than two weeks before game opens


The tumultuous relationship between Leonard Fournette and the Jacksonville Jaguars came to an abrupt end. The 25-year-old hasn’t been in the best of luck with the organization lately and as such the team opted to move on to activating his fifth-year option which would have secured him. throughout the 2021 season. They went even further on Monday, less than two weeks before the regular season opener against the Indianapolis Colts, have officially given up on Fournette – the team announced.

Fournette was set to enter the final year of his rookie contract in 2020 and earn $ 4.17 million in base salary. This amount is / was fully guaranteed, and it is therefore expected that he will always receive it upon departure. The caveat is that the Jaguars will at least fight to try and avoid paying it, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, having canceled the guaranteed money and relying on a previous suspension to justify it, but Fournette has filed a grievance to get his money back.

It clearly shows just how ready the Jaguars are to move on without their former fourth-place pick, willing to potentially eat upwards of $ 4 million to say goodbye once and for all – assuming they lose the grievance. . Otherwise, it will be a clean financial separation.

Once the pride of LSU, Fournette was as sought after as any prospect in recent memory when he entered the 2017 NFL Draft. In the wake of Ezekiel Elliott’s runaway success with the Dallas Cowboys in 2016 – after being called up as the club’s fourth pick – there has been a massive paradigm shift in the NFL that has once again seen premium value given to a high-flying running back. But while Fournette’s arc in Jacksonville wasn’t a bust at all, it didn’t go as well as the relationship between Elliott and the Cowboys. From veiled criticism of the organization’s decisions to an outright rebuke from quarterback Gardner Minshew in a comment pressuring the team to sign Cam Newton instead, the handwriting is on the wall for this divorce for some time apparently.

The team was expected to allow him to play his final year, however, given he has just come out of a 2019 season in which he delivered 1,674 yards of scrimmage for an offense that played at the watch post. Instead, the Jaguars cut the cord at training camp, leaving Fournette little time to find a new home before the start of the regular season. His release comes a day after the Jaguars traded passer Yannick Ngakoue to the Vikings for draft picks.


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