espn

Malik Jackson confirms he will sign with Jaguars

Defensive end Malik Jackson confirmed to ESPN's Josina Anderson on Tuesday that a report he is leaving the Denver Broncos to join the Jacksonville Jaguars is true and he has agreed to a deal with Jacksonville.

A league source told ESPN's Michael DiRocco that Jackson's deal is for six years and worth $90 million, averaging $15 million per season. NFL Network had earlier reported terms of the contract.

The move, which was first reported by 9News in Denver, can't be made official until the new league year begins Wednesday at 4 p.m. ET.

The Jaguars have more than $79 million to spend under the salary cap this offseason.

Jackson, who was the Broncos' fifth-round pick of the 2012 NFL draft, posted a career-best 45 tackles this past season for the NFL's No. 1 defense, and he knocked down a career-best seven passes.

The Broncos used Jackson both at defensive end and defensive tackle in some of their specialty packages. He recovered Von Miller's forced fumble in the end zone for the Broncos' defensive touchdown in their 24-10 win over the Carolina Panthers in Super Bowl 50.

The Broncos said throughout the weeks leading up to free agency that it would be difficult to re-sign Jackson, given the interest he was expected to draw on the open market. The Broncos had also targeted a long-term deal for Miller, who received the team's exclusive franchise tag, and a new deal for quarterback Brock Osweiler as priorities as well.

Jackson, 26, played just over 75 percent of the defense's snaps this past season. He has routinely been one of the Broncos' most efficient player in terms of impact plays made with the playing time he's had.

While Jackson isn't an elite pass-rusher, he will help the Jaguars' interior and could also play on the edge in certain packages if needed.

The Jaguars were among the league's worst teams at rushing the passer in 2015 with 36 sacks. Andre Branch and Chris Clemons, the team's top two edge rushers, combined for seven sacks, and neither will return in 2015.

Defensive tackle Sen'Derrick Marks, who led the team with 8.5 sacks in 2014, missed nearly the entire 2015 season with various injuries. He is expected to be healthy, and his return to the middle of the defensive front will help with the interior rush. Adding Jackson alongside him, especially on third down, will give the Jaguars a strong push up the middle, which should help the edge rushers as well.

ESPN's Jeff Legwold contributed to this report.

Related Video
Malik Jackson leaving Denver for Jacksonville
Malik Jackson leaving Denver for Jacksonville
Josina Anderson discusses Malik Jackson's decision to leave the Broncos to play for the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Related Topics:
sportsespnmalik jacksonjacksonville jaguarsnfldenver broncos
(Copyright ©2017 ESPN Internet Ventures. All rights reserved.)

Load Comments