The Jaguars have been busy in recent days, but they have followed up their earlier work with a significant investment on their defense. Jacksonville has agreed to terms on a three-year, $30MM extension with defensive lineman Roy Robertson-Harris, reports NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo (Twitter link). A team announcement has confirmed the move.
The veteran has been with the Jaguars since 2021, and enjoyed a productive stint in Duval County. He has been a full-time starter in his two seasons in Jacksonville, setting new career highs in a number of categories in each of those campaigns. He was already under contract through the 2023 season, but he will now be on the books for what will likely be a competitive stretch for the team.
The 29-year-old served in a mostly rotational role with the Bears to begin his career. The potential he showed there led to a three-year, $24.4MM deal in the 2021 offseason as a free agent. Expectations were raised for the former UDFA after that, and he has delivered to date. Robertson-Harris registered 37 tackles and three sacks in 2021, matching the latter total this past season. He made 45 total stops in 2022, adding 12 QB hits and four pass deflections. His strong play continued into the postseason, where he totaled 14 stops, one sack and five TFLs across two playoff games.
His production was indicative of the overall success enjoyed by Jacksonville’s defensive front during their run to an AFC South title and wild card victory. The team spent last offseason complimenting Robertson-Harris with the signing of Folorunso Fatukasi and selection of Travon Walker with the first overall pick in the draft. As a team, the Jaguars ranked 12th in the NFL in terms of rushing yards allowed per game – a stark improvement compared to years past.
Roberstson-Harris set new personal marks over the past two campaigns in terms of playing time. He logged snap shares of 60% and 61%, respectively, and this deal sets him up to remain a starter for the foreseeable future. This extension carries an average value essentially identical to what his 2023 cap hit was going to be ($10.1MM). It also represents the latest piece of accounting the Jaguars have taken care of in advance of free agency, something which will not see as many notable moves as 2022. Retaining in-house players will be their priority, so this move comes as an example of achieving that goal.
Roberstson-Harris is now in line for a slight uptick in compensation over the next few years relative to his first Jaguars contract. That investment proved to be a fruitful one, and his play suggests this latest one could be as well.