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The Jacksonville Jaguars are gearing up their offense leading into the 2023 season. On Monday, they got word that wideout Calvin Ridley has been reinstated by the NFL, and now they are locking in another pass-catching weapon for Trevor Lawrence by utilizing the franchise tag on tight end Evan Engram, according to NFL Media. The tag pays $11.345 million in 2023 fully guaranteed. 

With the tag officially deployed, the Jaguars have not only locked Engram in for the 2023 season, but have now given themselves ample time to negotiate a long-term extension. Both Jaguars general manager Trent Baalke and Engram himself said earlier this offseason there was mutual interest on a contract extension. In fact, earlier this month, the Jaguars tweeted out a graphic of Engram's stats in 2022, and Engram responded saying, "My heart dropped I thought this was the announcement." It was fair to assume a deal was close.

Evan Engram
JAC • TE • #17
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Engram put together a career year for himself in 2022, as he caught 73 passes for a career-high 766 yards and four touchdowns in 17 games played. His 74.5-percent catch rate was a career-best as well. The former first-round pick of the New York Giants addressed the possibility of receiving the franchise tag in an interview with SiriusXM NFL Radio, and he didn't appear to be too worried about it. It sounds like Engram and the Jaguars want to remain together for years to come, even if an extension does not happen this offseason.

"It's a hypothetical, so it could happen, it could not," Engram previoulsy said about the franchise tag. "If that happens, I think that would be a place-holder to get something done. That's just the way I feel about it. If it does come to that, there will be conversations I have with my team, and we'll move forward from there. If that does happen, I'm going to be blessed either way. We'll figure something out long-term that both sides will be happy with."

Engram signed a fully-guaranteed deal worth $9 million last offseason.