Harvey Update

Concern over the lengthy holdout of No. 1 draft pick Derrick Harvey reached epic proportions last Saturday when the Jaguars defensive ends combined for four total tackles in the team's 19-14 loss to Miami.

More importantly, there were no quarterback sacks and only occasional pressure put on the Dolphins quarterback by any member of the defensive line.

That includes the team's No. 2 pick in the April draft, Quentin Groves, who, despite getting his first NFL start, failed to show up in the final tackle totals. Groves was a non-factor from his left end spot, often pushed to the inside or outside by five-year veteran Miami tackle Vernon Carey. Groves replaced Kenny Pettway in the starting lineup, with Pettway also being shut out on the tackle chart.

The only two defensive ends who did show up in the final defensive stats were Paul Spicer and his backup, Mkristo Bruce, both of whom were credited with two stops each.

But after registering five quarterback sacks the previous week against Atlanta, four of which came from ends, the Jaguars failed to sack any of the Dolphins three quarterbacks, nor did any other Jaguars defensive player.

And that may lead to an urgency to get Harvey signed and on the field, possibly in time to play in the team's final two preseason games at Tampa Bay and at Washington. Harvey and Groves were drafted with the thought that they would spruce up the club's pass-rushing scheme, an area that was woefully weak a year ago.

With starting defensive end Reggie Hayward having missed the first two preseason games while nursing a sore hamstring back to full strength, Harvey's loss has been felt even more. He eclipsed Byron Leftwich's club record of 19 days as a rookie holdout last week. Add in the fact that defensive end James Wyche has already been placed on injured reserve (for a second consecutive year) and it's easy to see why there are concerns at the end position.

According to published reports, the Jaguars are offering the rookie from Florida a $16.885 million guaranteed package with a base package of $21.140 million. Cedric Ellis in the No. 7 draft position received a contract of $19.5 million guaranteed and $32 million base, while Keith Rivers in the No. 9 slot, signed for a reported $15.445 guaranteed, $20.125 base package.

A year ago, Jamaal Anderson as the No. 8 pick in the draft, signed for $15.361 million guaranteed, $19.218 base package. The Jaguars offer to Harvey is about 10 percent higher than what Anderson received and is in between what Ellis and Rivers signed for, though it hovers closer to Rivers than Ellis.

Ken Kremer, Harvey's agent, is looking for a deal closer to what Ellis received. As a result, the two sides are at an impasse. The Jaguars have made two offers to Harvey, the first on July 1 and the most recent on July 28. The two sides spoke twice early last week but remain in a stalemate.

Meanwhile, the Jaguars woes at the defensive end spot continue. If Hayward doesn't return to action soon and if Harvey doesn't come to an agreement, the Jaguars will be worse off than they were at the end of the 2007 season, when it was generally accepted that this was the No. 1 defensive position that needed to be addressed.


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