- The recent comments from Browns owner Jimmy Haslam reportedly “haven’t deterred” the Jaguars pursuit of Mack, according to Rapoport.
- Rapoport adds that the Jaguars still haven’t signed Mack to an offer sheet at this point in time.
- Mike Garafolo is getting the sense that this situation is headed for a solution some time soon.
Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com spoke to a number of agents and cap experts from around the league regarding the type of offer sheet the Jaguars could use to prevent the Browns from matching.
According to La Canfora, the best suggestion he heard was essentially a two-year deal that included a base salary of $10 million in 2014. After that, Mack’s salary would reduce to $1 million, but also include a $15 million roster bonus due that year.
La Canfora adds that the $15 million roster bonus could later be converted into a signing bonus for a long-term extension.
It’s worth mentioning that lining up a contract like this would be CBA violation, according to La Canfora. However, that doesn’t mean that the two sides could verbally agree to this type of contract and see what the Browns elect to do.
La Canfora mentions numerous times that Mack doesn’t want to be back in Cleveland and believes it could be a mistake in the long-run for the Browns to keep a guy who doesn’t want to be there long-term at this price.
Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports that “talks are still ongoing” between C Alex Mack and the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Browns owner Jimmy Haslam recently mentioned that they’re “optimistic Alex Mack will remain a Cleveland Brown,” per Kay Cabot.
Haslam didn’t specifically say that they would match an offer from the Jaguars, but added that “we want Alex Mack to be a brown for a long time.”
In terms of cap space, the Browns and Jaguars rank No. 1 and 3 respectively. Cleveland has close to $5 million more in available cap space than Jacksonville to work with, so it would clearly require huge commitment for the Jaguars to keep the Browns from matching.
Mack has played every snap for the Browns since being drafted in the first round in the 2009 NFL Draft. Pro Football Focus has him rated as the No. 4 center in the league this past season.
A league source with “knowledge of Alex Mack’s circumstances” tells Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk that the Browns would match an offer sheet of $22 million guaranteed over three years from the Jaguars “in a second.”
A previous report mentioned that it would likely take an offer sheet of $22 million fully guaranteed over the course of the first three years in order to prevent the Browns from matching the Jaguars offer. Apparently, this still wouldn’t be enough to prevent Cleveland from matching their offer sheet.
“The Browns will match almost anything, that’s why [the Browns didn’t use the] franchise tag,” the source said. “They hope some dumb team can sign him, they match and have him long term. . . . The only way to keep him long term is match someone else’s deal.”
Florio’s source added that Mack would be an “idiot” if he were to sign this kind of offer. Instead, the source believes Mack would be better off signing the transition tender and reaching free agency again next year.
Florio writes that Mack could make $22 million over two years if the Browns were to use the transition tag on him again next season, which helps to illustrate the benefit from signing the transition tender.
We’ll have to see if anything comes of the Jaguars interest in Mack, but it looks like it would take a truly absurd offer to sign him away from the Browns.
A league source tells Ryan O’Halloran that the Jaguars would likely have to offer free agent C Alex Mack an offer sheet that includes $22 million fully guaranteed over the course of the first three years in order to prevent the Browns from matching.
“The Jaguars can afford it, but why not wait to use that money later on a pass rusher, receiver or quarterback,” O’Halloran’s source questioned.
- Mike Garafolo confirms that Mack has met with the Jaguars and adds that although the meeting is over, there are “ongoing discussions” between the two parties.
- Ian Rapoport reports that the Jaguars haven’t signed Mack to an offer sheet as of now, but there is “lots of interest” in Mack.
- Rapoport adds that the Browns are also discussing a long-term deal with Mack.
The Browns used the transition tag on Mack, which means they would have to him a one-year tender of $10 million if he were to sign it.
If the Browns were to somehow lose Mack to the Jaguars, they wouldn’t receive any compensation seeing as they elected to use the transition tag instead of the franchise designation.
There hasn’t been a lot of buzz surrounding Mack, even though teams can meet and discuss a long-term contract with him. Many expect the cap-rich Browns to match any offer Mack receives on the open market, but this is certainly interesting news nonetheless.