Yannick Ngakoue really wanted out of Jacksonville.
Per multiple sources, Ngakoue agreed to take less money under his one-year franchise tender of $17.788 million to facilitate the trade from the Jaguars to the Vikings.
A one source pegged it, the new salary will be in the range of $13.5 million. (That specific number has not been confirmed, yet.)
It was critical to the trade happening. Teams couldn’t afford to pay him $17.788 million for one year — especially in this year. So his choices were to take what he could get elsewhere or stay in Jacksonville at $17.788 million. Or, as Ngakoue may have done, taken zero dollars this year and not played for Jacksonville at all.
With the Jaguars insisting on getting at least a second-round pick for Ngakoue and unwilling to pay any of his money in order to get the deal done (unlike the Texans last year when sending Jadeveon Clowney to Seattle), the subsidy needed to come not from his prior team but from the player.
And here’s where it gets even more interesting: There was at least one other team from which Ngakoue would have taken even less than what the Vikings are paying him.
So, yes, he wanted out badly. Badly enough to walk away from $17.788 million in a state with no state income tax and to take $13.5 million in a state with a maximum rate of 9.85 percent.