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This is kind of messy for the Las Vegas Raiders and New York Giants.
Next stop … drama.
It already existed because neither Jacobs nor Barkley were willing to accept long-term contract offers from the Raiders and Giants, respectively. But with the passing of the deadline, they won’t be able to negotiate a deal until next offseason.
And it gets worse.
Josh Jacobs Unlikely To Report To Start Of Camp
Sources say that barring a significant change, neither player will sign their tenders in time to be present when the Raiders and Giants have veterans report to camp July 25.
Jacobs has even told confidants he’s willing to miss all of training camp and hasn’t fully decided on whether he’ll be present for the regular season’s start. Barkley’s status for all of training camp and the start of the season is unclear.
Dallas Cowboys running back Tony Pollard, also tendered with a franchise tag, has signed his $10.1 million tag. He is expected to report to training camp.
So what happens next?
Saquon Barkley Drama On Way For Giants
For the Giants, this is bad news because it instantly drives an uncomfortable narrative for the start of training camp. And the club hates that.
The Giants view themselves as New York’s businesslike team. They keep problems and disagreements within the walls of their training facility.
They enjoy the fact they surprised some people and unexpectedly made the playoffs in coach Brian Daboll’s first season. They like that the crosstown Jets get attention on the back pages of New York tabloids while they fly under the proverbial radar.
But there will be no hiding under the radar with Barkley. He was the NFL’s fourth-leading rusher with 1,312 yards last season. And him likely missing the start of training camp is a big issue.
Raiders Could Have Had Jacobs Under Contract
The Raiders have turned over coaches and starting quarterbacks and have consistently been in the news. They are not averse to attention. But the Jacobs situation makes them look bad.
Because they’ve miscalculated.
Before last season they had the opportunity to extend their control over Jacobs by placing a fifth-year option on him. That would have gotten Jacobs under contract for 2023 at a cost of $8.03 million.
The Raiders, fresh off the hiring of a new general manager and coaching staff, seemed unsure Jacobs was a great investment. They didn’t want to marry themselves to him.
So they declined the fifth-year option. And Jacobs answered the brain trust’s uncertainty by gaining an NFL-leading 1,653 yards. He scored 12 touchdowns.
Josh Jacobs Led NFL In Rushing
Good news: Jacobs suddenly became a player the Raiders want on their roster in the future.
Bad news: They couldn’t get him signed to a multi-year deal in time. Then they had to resort to the franchise tag.
And the franchise tag is costing the Raiders $10.1 million, which is $2 million more than had they used the fifth-year option last year.
It’s not just the salary cap savings that resonates here. It’s that Vegas missed a chance to have a highly productive player under contract and avoid the drama that now looms.