The Jaguars have begun preparing for their future, but half of this year's draft class was not included.
Veteran free safety Carnell Lake was waived today in final roster cuts, in a move that was made with an eye toward the Jaguars' 2002 salary cap. In another cap-conscious decision, veteran backup quarterback Jamie Martin was released.
The most startling news of final cuts is that only five of the Jaguars' 10 2001 draft picks survived final cuts. Fifth-round pick David Leaverton, sixth-rounder Chad Ward, and seventh-rounders Richmond Flowers and Randy Chevrier were waived today.
Veterans Donald Broomfield, Kevin Clemens, LeShun Daniels, Lawrence Hart, Dwayne Ledford, Reggie Nelson, Troy Pelshak and Joe Wesley were released.
Undrafted rookie free agents Ryan Goven, Brent Johnson, Dave Kadela, Ryan Prince, Chandler Smith, Patrick Venzke and James Watkins were also waived.
The Jaguars are expected to sign some of the players they've cut to their five-man practice squad, which will be named later this week.
Wide receiver R. Jay Soward has begun serving a four-week suspension for violation of the league's substance abuse policy. His official status is reserve/suspended and he will not count against the Jaguars' 53-man roster during his suspension.
Center John Wade, who has been out of action since foot surgery in June, was retained on the active roster and he is thought to be on the verge of returning to action.
Cutting Lake, an expensive free-agent acquisition by the Jaguars in 1999, won't save the Jaguars much money on this year's salary cap, but his release almost certainly will have saved the team $2.275 million on the 2002 salary cap.
Lake was scheduled to earn $500,000 in salary this year. The Jaguars will save that amount, minus the salary of the player who replaces him on the roster.
His re-structured contract also included $2.275 million in incentives that would've been easily earned and would've been applied toward the 2002 salary cap. With his release, the Jaguars have guaranteed Lake will not count more than $2.3 million against next year's cap. The $2.3 million in "dead money" will be his remaining amortization. Of course, he will also count $2.3 million in "dead money" against this year's cap.
Martin was to earn $518,000 in salary this season. Jonathan Quinn will earn $418,000 in salary. The Jaguars are expected claim a quarterback from the waiver wire, and the money they save on this year's cap will be the difference between Martin's salary and the new quarterback's salary.
jaguars.com will update this story with quotes from coach Tom Coughlin's press conference, which is scheduled for 4:30 p.m. today. Coughlin will comment on his roster decisions.
Vic Ketchman is the Senior Editor of Jaguars Inside Report, the official team newspaper of the Jacksonville Jaguars. One-year subscriptions may be purchased by calling 1-888-846-5247.