Jaguars reporter ’50-50′ on Josh Allen deal done before tag deadline

The franchise tag has seemed an inevitability for Jacksonville Jaguars pass rusher Josh Allen.

John Oehser of isn’t convinced it’ll be a necessity, though. In his daily column, the team reporter wrote that he’s “Fifty-fifty. Ish.” on the chances of Allen signing a long-term deal in time for the Jaguars to use the tag on wide receiver Calvin Ridley instead.

There’s no time to waste. The deadline to use the franchise tag is March 5 and Jacksonville will undoubtedly use it on Allen if no deal is in place rather than risk the pass rusher reaching free agency.

But Oehser’s belief that a deal is a real possibility is a bit of a surprise. The Jaguars were fine allowing Allen to play the entire 2023 season on the fifth-year option of his rookie contract and he shot his value through the roof by racking up a franchise-record 17.5 sacks. And as recently as the Pro Bowl Games earlier this month, Allen said negotiations with Jacksonville hadn’t even started.

Three weeks later, it seems a contract extension that would likely be the first in Jaguars history to eclipse a total value of $100 million could be coming together. Or at least a “50-50” chance.

If the Jaguars are forced to use the tag on Allen, he’d be set to make about $24 million on a one-year deal in 2024 if the team can’t reach a long-term deal by July. If an extension is reached before the March 5 deadline, the Jaguars would likely use the tag instead on Ridley which would be due to pay the receiver about $21.8 million.

Story originally appeared on Jaguars Wire