It took nearly a month, but the Jacksonville Jaguars finally gave in to Jalen Ramsey's on Tuesday when they made the decision in exchange for a package of three draft picks that included two first-rounders.
The Jaguars trade with the Rams ends four weeks of drama that started in mid-September when Ramsey made it crystal clear that he wanted out of Jacksonville. During an interview in September, Ramsey had said he wanted out because he wasn't , which is led by executive vice president Tom Coughlin and general manager Dave Caldwell.
According to Coughlin, the reason the team finally caved in to Ramsey's demands is because they felt they got a good deal from the Rams. Thanks to the trade, the Jags will get Los Angeles' first round picks in both 2020 and 2021.
"Given the situation with Jalen, we made this decision based on what we thought is in the best interest of the Jacksonville Jaguars, for this season and well into the future," Coughlin said Wednesday. "We feel the trade that we struck with the Rams gives us great value for the next two drafts, and we remain very confident that our team today will compete this season for a division title. Jalen was a productive player, but the time came to move on and we wish him and his family the best in Los Angeles."
Although there had been a report that the Jags wouldn't trade Ramsey even if someone offered "five first round picks," it's possible the team's stance softened over the weekend after their star cornerback sat out against in Jacksonville's 13-6 loss to the Saints.
In the days leading up to the game, Ramsey apparently had a "heart-to-heart" conversation with Jags owner Shad Khan where he assured Khan that he.
"Well, I think he's going to be playing this week, so hopefully you'll tune into the Saints game," Khan said.
When Ramsey didn't play on Sunday, it's possible that was the final straw for the Jaguars owner. Khan actually released a statement on Wednesday where he praised the team's football staff for how they handled the Ramsey situation over the past month.
"The Jacksonville Jaguars are doing just fine today," Khan said, via the team's Twitter account. "I give kudos to our football staff for not only managing this matter extremely well, but giving our team and fans a lot to look forward to in years to come. Credit also goes to our players for their professional approach throughout this situation. It did not go unnoticed. Now it's time to turn the attention again to what's most important -- the Jacksonville Jaguars."
The trade with the Rams ends a contentious four weeks in Jacksonville where Ramsey missed multiple games due to a "back injury." After his trade demands became public, Ramsey missed three games, which are the only three games that he's ever missed in his career. First, Ramsey missed the team's Week 4 game against the Broncos due to back issues and the fact that his girlfriend was expected to go into labor. After that, the corner then missed the Jags' Week 5 game against the Panthers due to more back issues, and apparently, he was also battling the flu. Ramsey then missed the team's game against the Saints due to his lingering back issue.
Jaguars coach Doug Marrone was actually asked on Wednesday about the possibility that Ramsey might have been faking his injuries and he wasn't buying it. The question came as part of a broader question asking if Ramsey had created a blueprint that star players could now follow to get traded.
"We got to be careful when we say this is a blueprint with injury and wanting to move, because obviously, he did have an injury. I don't even want to go there," Marrone said, via the team's official Twitter account. "How to stop anyone else from doing it? I can't answer that question. I really can't."
Marrone also added that he had "no issues" with how Ramsey handled things. Despite Ramsey's unhappiness with the Jaguars front office, Marrone said that he actually had a pretty solid relationship with his star corner.
"I had a good relationship with him and we were working together to get him healthy and get him on the field," Marron said. "I was doing everything I can [to keep him]. We were talking every day. We talked last night after [the trade]."
If Ramsey is magically healed and playing for the Rams this week, that could make Marrone look foolish for trying to defend a player who clearly didn't want to play Jacksonville.