The Jacksonville Jaguars have jettisoned another big-name player.
NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo reported that the Jags waived running back Leonard Fournette, per a source informed of the decision.
The team later confirmed the move.
The former No. 4 overall pick in 2017 was selected to be the centerpiece of the Jags’ ground-and-pound vision, as seen by former VP Tom Coughlin. While Fournette had fine counting stats, his efficiency never lived up to the draft status.
“Really just trying to take the team and put the best team together from what we’ve seen in our practices so, at the end of the day, I just felt that was the best decision for us as a team,” coach Doug Marrone told reporters on why the decision was made so close to the season opener. “I think it gives us the best opportunity with the skillsets that we have with the other players in there, I just thought that was the best for the team and doing it now. We exhausted all trade opportunities; we weren’t able to get anything there so I just felt that now we can work on the team and the plan and get ourselves ready for the season.”
The Jags had been attempting to trade Fournette for months but found no takers.
Marrone explained his trade interest was essentially nonexistent.
“My question was, ‘Can we get any value?’ And we couldn’t get any. Fifth, sixth, we couldn’t get anything,” he said.
In 2019, Fournette rushed for 1,152 yards on 265 carries with three TDs, averaging a career-best 4.3 yards per carry in 15 games. In his three seasons in Jacksonville, the 25-year-old compiled 2,631 yards and 17 TDs on 666 attempts, for a 4.0 yards-per-carry average.
His tenure in Jacksonville was a rocky one, from run-ins with management to ineffective play. In 2018, the team suspended the running back for one game following a fistfight with Bills defender Shaq Lawson.
The Jags had previously declined Fournette’s fifth-year option. He was set to make $4.167 million in base salary. He’s subject to waivers after being cut by Jacksonville.