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Some draft analysts had Josh Allen as the best prospect available in the 2019 class when he was coming out of Kentucky, and it was viewed as a steal when the talented edge rusher fell to Jacksonville with the No. 7 pick.
His rookie season certainly backed up that evaluation, as he burst onto the scene with 10.5 sacks. Injuries limited him to just eight games and 2.5 quarterback takedowns in Year 2, but he appeared in all but one game this season and was one of the team’s few bright spots. His sack total was 7.5, but he stepped up against the run with a career-high 71 tackles (including 12 for loss).
Now, it’s decision time. As Allen is poised to enter his fourth season, the team only has until May 3 to make a decision on whether it will pick up his fifth-year team option. Since joining the team, he’s gone to the Pro Bowl once (in 2019 as a rookie and alternate) and has been a Jags team captain from 2020-21, which clearly is a reflection of how his teammates view him. Per Over the Cap, his fifth-year option would cost the Jags $10.2 million, which may not be that steep for a team that has the cap space that the Jags have (at least for now).
While crazier things have happened, it seems almost certain that the team will look to pick up that option. He has been very productive when healthy, and this team has so few promising defensive players to build around. The Jaguars will likely look to hand Allen a long-term deal next season, let alone extend his contract to a fifth year, and he should be around in Jacksonville for a while, if he chooses to.