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Transcript - Jaguars General Manager Trent Baalke: March 10, 2021

(On the quarterback position) "With Gardner [Minshew II] and [Jake] Luton, we're in good shape. We have two young guys that both have played. They've both done a very good job. I think, right now, we're just trying to get a feel for them going in with the new system. There's just a lot of newness right now. That will all shake itself out once we get into the offseason program, which hopefully we have, and we'll go from there."

(On the potential for a new facility) "You know, I don't know much about that at this time. I think the one thing we're pushing for from an organizational standpoint, [Head] Coach [Urban Meyer] and I, we want the best of the best and what that looks like moving forward, we don't know that. But we're going to work hard to give our players and the staff the best opportunity to be successful, and if that's a new facility, hopefully that's something that we can get to at some point down the road."

(On the players who opted out of last season) "We're still working through that with all three of them. I don't think there's clarity yet on any of them, but [we're] certainly working that way and we should know something within the next week or two."

(On if he has priorities in free agency) "We do, we certainly do. We're looking at a lot of different positions and a lot of different players and the key word there was value. We're looking for value. That isn't always the most expensive player. There's all different levels of 'like.' When we say we like a player, to what level and what value do we place on him? So, that's going to be critical as we build this team out moving forward is making sure we get the value of the position and the player correct."

(On Trevor Lawrence's pro day) "I didn't attend the pro day. Right now, with the restrictions, you can have three staff members from each organization attend and we felt, and I felt, that it was very important to get the head coach [Urban Meyer], the offensive coordinator [Darrell Bevell], and the passing game coordinator [Brian Schottenheimer] to that workout. I've had the privilege of seeing him play multiple times, so for us as an organization to prioritize our coaching staff being there, I thought was instrumental and very important."

(On his impressions of Trevor Lawrence in virtual meetings) "You're only allowed five virtual meetings with prospects. I believe we've used two up right now with Trevor [Lawrence]. I have not been on those. Those have been more coach oriented. I will be on one as we move forward, but the restriction of five one-hour sessions per prospect kind of limits us to exactly what we can do."

(On rebuilding the tight end room) "I'd love to give you names, but if I give you names, I'm giving the names to the 31 other teams we're competing against. So, we're going to keep the names and what we're thinking to ourselves at this point. But we have a plan that uses both free agency and the draft to do so and we have some guys internally that are going to be competing for those spots as well."

(On if the tight end position was one of the first positions he evaluated) "I think you look at the overall roster and what you do is you try to look at the resources you have available, both through free agency, the draft, who's on your team, and try to put a game plan together using that model. What can we get done in free agency? What can we get done in the draft? Where does the draft seem to have some value, some depth to it positionally? Where does free agency have some depth to it positionally? And you try to put a game plan together to attack the roster as a whole, not looking at individually position by position, but overall as a team."

(On the number of quarterbacks he will evaluate as draft prospects) "I think it's our job to know every individual that's entering the draft and we've had a lot of zoom calls internally with various departments, our scouting staff, our coaching staff, our player assessment staff. We've had a lot of different people reaching to players, and that's only going to pick up pace as we go down the road here. So, I think that's an ongoing process and we'll continue to use every means available to get to know these players as well as we can because it's critical to the decision-making process."

(On if he has priorities positionally during free agency) "We do, we really do. But again, any information I give you, I'm giving to 31 other teams. So, for me to sit here and give you a punchline positionally of where we're going wouldn't make a lot of sense at this time. I hope you understand that and respect that."

(On if any other players outside of Cam Robinson were in consideration for the franchise tag) "Again, any information I give you I give to everybody. We used the tag on Cam [Robinson]. Cam's a good, young football player, 26 years old that's developing and has done a good job. He knows where he stands with this organization. We have a lot of respect for him and where he can get to as a player. It's hard to find left tackles in the National Football League. They don't make many body types that big, that athletic, with that type of length. So, he's a young man that we're excited about working with and he knows exactly what he needs to do as we move forward and we're looking forward to working with him."

(On his reaction to this year's salary cap of $182.5 million and his plan for spending that cap space this year) "I'm just glad it wasn't in the 120's like you first stated. No, we figured it would be somewhere between 180 [million] and 185 [million] and that's what we planned on. As far as spending, we're always going to look to push the envelope and spend to the cap on a three-year rolling cycle, whether you're above or below, but over a three-year period hoping to spend to the cap. We have an ownership that's willing to do that and we want to do that, so we're going to use the dollars. I spoke earlier about value, I think value's critical. You have to get the value of the players right. Just like building a stock portfolio, if you get a bunch of overpriced stocks, you buy high and sell low, eventually that catches up with you. So, we want to treat the players right and value them correctly and bring them into the organization and give them the best of the best and that's what we're looking to do."

(On prioritizing a more skilled player over a player in a position of need) "It depends on what that level of 'isn't as good' is. I think you're always looking to add the best of the best to the roster. You never go wrong by creating more depth at any position and what you're trying to do is build as competitive a roster as possible with the best available players. We've always placed a little less value on need, more value on the value of the player itself, so that's how we'll continue to look at it. But if the need and the value coincide, then we'll go with need."

(On if the new salary cap number creates a bigger advantage for the Jaguars) "I don't know. I think it's all relative. Everyone still has the same amount. Whether it would've been $185 [million] or $182.5 [million] or $180 [million], everyone would've been proportionally the same. I think we're sitting in a good cap space right now and we're going to continue to look at this market and see how it unfolds. Generally speaking, the big contracts get done early in the process and we'll follow that, and we'll be involved in that. Where it ends up leading us to player wise? That remains to be seen, but we feel very good about where we're currently at. We feel good about the plan and now we just have to execute."

(On if expects more free agents to be available as a result of the salary cap) "I think there'll be more available, yes. When the trickle-down affect's going to happen? Is it going to happen early? Is it going to happen as players get signed? I think that remains to be seen, but there is going to be a plethora of players available and we're going to continue to monitor the free agents that were already on the market and we'll look at guys that become available when they become available."

(On the importance of the relationship between the assistant coaches and the front office) "First of all, I think it's critical and I think it's evident here that we're very aligned in how we think. I think the coaches should have a lot of buy into what we're doing and in order to create buy in, they have to have involvement. So, it's very important that when we bring a player in here, that everybody's aligned. When everybody's aligned, it's very easy to move forward. We talk about talent acquisition. You acquire talent, then you have to be able to develop them. Once you develop them, you have to be able to retain them. So, those are the three levels we look at. What's the likelihood of bringing someone in, acquiring the right person with the right mindset, the right physical gifts, and then developing them to their full potential? That's something we're going to place a lot of emphasis on within the sports performance department, developing these guys, creating as much value for them individually as we can. Once we do that, our job's to retain them and do the best job we can. We hope it becomes very difficult to retain our guys because we have so many that have maxed out their value. That's the goal."

(On the running back room) "Right now, James [Robinson] obviously had a tremendous year, especially when you factor in how he entered the league as a college free agent, 1,000 plus yards, very consistent performer week in and week out, tough, has a great mindset, the type of player we're looking for. But we have to add some explosiveness to that room as well and we have to be able to take some of the carries off of James. You can only ride a horse so long. He's done a great job, he will continue to do a great job for the organization, and we feel he'll even take a step forward from where he was a year ago. But adding some competitiveness to that room, we feel we've got some guys in house that can compete for roles, but we're certainly looking to add to that room as well."