Connect with us

Jacksonville Jaguars

2019 Senior Bowl: Defensive prospects to watch for the Jaguars

Zach Goodall

Published

on

Sep 1, 2018; University Park, PA, USA; Penn State Nittany Lions cornerback Amani Oruwariye (21) during the third quarter against the Appalachian State Mountaineers at Beaver Stadium. Penn State defeated Appalachian State 45-38 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Matthew O'Haren-USA TODAY Sports

The 2019 Senior Bowl starts this week – an annual showcase for the best senior NFL Draft prospects in front of NFL scouts, coaches, front office staffs, and media.

The Jacksonville Jaguars have a strong history of drafting Senior Bowl talent under general manager Dave Caldwell, selecting prospects such as WR D.J. Chark, QB Tanner Lee, DE Dawuane Smoot, TE Ben Koyack, OL Brandon Linder, LB Telvin Smith, CB Aaron Colvin, RB Denard Robinson, CB Dwayne Gratz, and SS Johnathan Cyprien after scouting them in Mobile.

Considering the strength of this year’s Senior Bowl rosters, its hard to assume the Jaguars break that trend.

Let’s go position group by position group with players that Jaguars fans should keep their eyes on during the Senior Bowl and the week of practice, which starts on Tuesday, January 22nd, on NFL Network. Make sure to follow along with Locked On Jaguars during the Senior Bowl week as Chris Thornton and myself have received media credentials for the event.

You can read our Jaguars offensive prospect watch-list for the Senior Bowl here.

Defensive ends

Jalen Jelks, Oregon, 6-6, 245 (North)

The Jaguars swung on, and missed, at putting 2018 1st round pick Taven Bryan at the “big-end” 5-tech role as the heir to Calais Campbell at strong-side defensive end in 2018, realizing about halfway through the season that he is a more natural fit at 3-tech defensive tackle.

So, if the Jaguars are still looking for an heir to Campbell to eventually clear up his cap number, Jelks is a fit. He possesses ideal frame, quickness, and power to dominate the run game and get pressure on the QB. However, as Benjamin Solak of The Draft Network notes, Jelks has some technique development to do in order to turn some of his pass rushing moves from pressure into sacks,

All in all, Jelks is a prospect filled with potential to make an impact as a strong-side defensive end and is a scheme fit for the Jaguars. Being that he’d learn for a year in a rotation with Calais Campbell, Jacksonville could be an ideal situation for the Oregon defender.

Oshane Ximines, Old Dominion, 6-4, 255 (South)

According to his reports from various TDN writers, Ximines doesn’t possesses much bend or elite athleticism, but he’s athletic enough just to get by as a rotational pass rusher and has an arsenal of clean pass rushing moves to serve as such.

Jacksonville is looking to replace Dante Fowler Jr.’s role as their third down pass rusher opposite of Yannick Ngakoue, and Ximines’ production – 32.5 sacks, 51 tackles for loss, and 11 forced fumbles – paired with his profile makes him an intriguing prospect to fill that role.

Defensive tackles

Daylon Mack, Texas A&M, 6-1, 320

The Jaguars really don’t need to address their interior defensive line this year, considering the talent they already have on the roster and the Taven Bryan pick last year, but for the purpose of this drill, let’s look at a prospect that could make sense as a Jaguars pick come April.

Daylon Mack, a nose tackle who had a big week at the East-West Shrine Game last week that led to his Senior Bowl call-up, could be a sneaky-good selection as the heir to Marcell Dareus at 1-tech nose tackle. In selecting Mack, the Jaguars could release Abry Jones and shed his $4 million 2019 cap hit, and let Mack groom under Dareus until he’s ready to start in the future – which would lead to Dareus’ release down the road to get out of his double-digit yearly salary.

As a rotating nose tackle this year, Mack accumulated 5.5 sacks and 10 tackles for loss in a true breakout season. His explosion off the line would match what the team saw in Bryan, who has an unreal first step as a rusher, and give Jacksonville two extremely explosive pass rushers to tandem along the interior in the future.

Linebackers

Deshaun Davis, Auburn, 5-11, 246 (South)

The Jaguars probably don’t need to address linebacker unless they want to add some competition at WILL (weakside OLB) after what was a miserable season for starter Telvin Smith. But with Blair Brown already in house to serve that purpose, they could look for a true “green-dot” middle linebacker to serve as depth to Myles Jack and on special teams.

Deshaun Davis of Auburn is referred to as the Tigers’ second defensive coordinator by his teammates for his football IQ and that he has literally called plays for the team on the field before. That type of leadership is something tat Jaguars will undoubtedly have their ears perked up for after a disasterous 2018 season where even EVP of Football Operations Tom Coughlin called the team out for a lack of.

As for play, Davis is a run stopper, through and through. The Jaguars have a proven coverage backer in Myles Jack and obviously their secondary is dominant in that respect, but have struggled taking on the run game as of late. Davis could fill at MIKE (middle linebacker) or WILL on early downs to diagnose and stop the run, something the Jaguars have needed help with recently on defense.

Germaine Pratt, North Carolina State, 6-3, 245 (North)

Pratt is a lengthy prospect who is undoubtedly going to play outside instead of inside at the next level with his coverage skills in space. Joe Marino notes that Pratt is a convered safety who has terrific range and pursuit ability to play in the pass game, where he accumulated four interceptions and nine defended passes during his career.

So, let’s assume the Jaguars do want to address Telvin Smith’s coverage liability. Pratt could be a mid-round guy the like, as he possesses ideal length and coverage skills to play in a later-down role to keep Smith as a gap-shooter and early-down defender vs. the run and short passing game.

Cornerbacks

Amani Oruwariye, Penn State, 6-1, 201 (North)

Oruwariye is one of the best tier-2 cornerbacks in this class who shouldn’t last long into the second round if he even makes it there. Much like linebacker, the Jaguars don’t really need to address their starters, but with an offseason that could get crazy as the team has to grow their cap space… let’s get hypothetical.

What if Jaguars players start getting put on the block to get immediate value? Malik Jackson definitely will be, as he appears to be as good as gone right now. Tashaun Gipson could be as well, as the Jaguars just inked his backup, primary special teamer and spot-starter Jarrod Wilson, to a three-year deal, which is pretty substantial given Wilson was an undrafted free agent three years ago who has stuck around. And, even though this one is incredibly unlikely… trading A.J. Bouye would clear $9.5 million off of the Jaguars cap table and would likely add them a round two pick this year.

Again, this isn’t likely to happen, but if it did, Oruwariye is a prospect who can start right away in this scheme. He’s incredibly lengthy and physical, with a high football IQ and prospers in zone coverage, and can even play some press. With an eye for the ball, Oruwariye has intercepted eight passes and defended 20 in his Penn State career.

All hypothetical, but we need something to talk about with the defense this offseason… right?

Isaiah Johnson, Houston, 6-2, 195 (South)

Another lengthy, cover 3 scheme fit of a cornerback prospect, Benjamin Solak of TDN believes Johsnon is an ideal developmental player for any team that fits the “Seattle-mold” on defense… just like Jacksonville.

The Jaguars’ primary zone coverage is C3, splitting the field in three pieces deep to split responsibilities between thw two cornerbacks and the free safety. Considering Johnson’s fit there and that the Jaguars at least need to add a solid outside depth piece, as we saw down the midseason stretch they simply didn’t have enough cornerbacks to account for injuries, Johnson could be a guy they utilize as a depth piece for a year or two as he develops, and eventually take over as CB2 when Bouye’s contract expires.

Safeties

Juan Thornhill, Virginia, 6-0, 210 (North)

Thornhill, a converted cornerback, is a safety prospect who play with range and great cover skills in both zone and man coverage against big-bodied receivers and tight ends, according Joe Marino of TDN.

That type of player fits the Jaguars free safety mold, and like I noted earlier, Tashaun Gipson could be on his way out of Jacksonville soon to clear his $7.45 million 2019 cap hit, with the priority, three-year re-signing of Jarrod Wilson being kept in mind here. Thornhill has a nose for the football, hauling in 13 interceptions and 26 defended passes during his time at Virginia, and his traits are desirable enough to consider him a potential heir to Gipson in the Jaguars secondary.

Zach Goodall covers the Jacksonville Jaguars for the Locked On Jaguars podcast and website. Follow him on Twitter @zach_goodall.

Advertisement
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Jacksonville Jaguars

NFLPA seemingly responds to Jaguars, Coughlin about the word ‘voluntary’

Demetrius Harvey

Published

on

May 26, 2017; Jacksonville, FL, USA; Jacksonville Jaguars executive vice president of football operations Tom Coughlin (center) looks on during organized team activities at Everbank Field. Mandatory Credit: Logan Bowles-USA TODAY Sports

The Jaguars today issued their annual state of the franchise address to fans and media alike. During the press conference, Tom Coughlin addressed the audience regarding the status of the football team. During his speech, Coughlin spoke about the player’s attendance to voluntary offseason workouts which began on Monday. Only two players were missing from the workouts — Jalen Ramsey and Telvin Smith –, and Coughlin’s message was clear when he stated: “We’re very close to 100 percent attendance – and quite frankly, all our players should be here.”

One statement which stood out by Coughlin was made directly afterward “Those who have everything given to them become lazy, selfish and insensitive to the real values of the team. The hard work that many try to avoid is the major building block for the development of an outstanding football team.” This statement creates a sort of cloudy vision of what exactly voluntary means which is why the NFLPA decided to issue their own statement on what voluntary means to them:

Listen. Everyone would love if the Jaguars had 100% attendance at these sort of voluntary workouts. There is no doubt that great strides can be made in all facets of the offseason, however, there is a reason why these workouts have been made voluntary. NFL players have been overworked, and collectively bargained with the NFL in an effort to limit the workload over the offseason in order to produce a better product on the field in the fall.

Whether or not Jalen Ramsey or Telvin Smith show up for the few-week period of voluntary workouts should have no impact. Both athletes have proven themselves over the years plenty of times. Jalen Ramsey works out with his father in Tennesee every offseason. This has no changed, nor do I expect it to anytime soon.

Continue Reading

Jacksonville Jaguars

Jacksonville Jaguars official 2019 NFL Schedule revealed

Demetrius Harvey

Published

on

Dec 31, 2018; Jacksonville, FL, USA; Fireworks are shot over the stadium after game between the Texas A&M Aggies and the North Carolina State Wolfpack at TIAA Bank Field. Mandatory Credit: Adam Hagy-USA TODAY Sports

The NFL has released all 32 teams’ schedules ahead of the 2019 NFL season. We can finally get a closer look at when the Jaguars will play each opponent. The Jaguars have one prime time game this upcoming season on  Thursday Night Football at home against the Titans (week 3). The Jaguars open up against the Kansas City Chiefs at home. The Jaguars lost to the Chiefs last season 30-14.

Earlier today the Jaguars announced they will be playing in London on November 2nd against the Houston Texans. Last season the Jaguars played in London on October 28th.

As for the Jaguars bye week, it will once again come directly after the Jaguars London journey which is to be expected as they have had a similar schedule the past two seasons. The bye week will occur during week 10 after their matchup against the Texans in London.

The Jaguars will be closing out the season at home for the first time since 2011. They play the Indianapolis Colts.

Jaguars 2019 NFL Schedule:

Week 1: vs. Kansas City Chiefs, 1:00 p.m., CBS, Sunday, September 8

Week 2: @ Houston Texans, 1:00 p.m., CBS, Sunday, September 15

Week 3: vs. Tennessee Titans, 8:20 p.m., NFL Network, Thursday, September 19

Week 4: @ Denver Broncos, 4:25 p.m., CBS, Sunday, September 29

Week 5: @ Carolina Panthers, 1:00 p.m., CBS, Sunday, October 6

Week 6: vs. New Orleans Saints, 1:00 p.m., CBS, Sunday, October 13

Week 7: @ Cincinnati Bengals, 1:00 p.m., CBS, Sunday, October 20

Week 8: vs. New York Jets, 1:00 p.m., CBS, Sunday, October 27

Week 9: vs. Houston Texans (London), 9:30 a.m., NFL Network, Sunday, November 3

Week 10: BYE

Week 11: @ Indianapolis Colts, 1:00 p.m., CBS, Sunday, November 17

Week 12: @ Tennessee Titans, 4:05 p.m., CBS, Sunday, November 24

Week 13: vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 1:00 p.m., FOX, Sunday, December 1

Week 14: vs. Los Angeles Chargers, 4:05 p.m., FOX, Sunday, December 8

Week 15: @ Oakland Raiders, 4:05 p.m., CBS, Sunday, December 15

Week 16: @ Atlanta Falcons, 1:00 p.m., FOX, Sunday, December 22

Week 17: vs. Indianapolis Colts, 1:00 p.m., CBS, Sunday, December 29

*All times are in EST

Continue Reading

Jacksonville Jaguars

REPORT: Jaguars claim former Cowboys guard Parker Ehinger

Zach Goodall

Published

on

Credit: DallasCowboys.com

According to Field Yates of ESPN, the Jacksonville Jaguars have added former Dallas Cowboys offensive lineman Parker Ehinger off of waivers.

Ehinger spent the 2018 season with the Cowboys following two with the Kansas City Chiefs. The former 4th round pick in 2016 was traded to Dallas last preseason, but spent the majority of the season on injured reserve with a knee injury suffered in practice. He also tore his ACL, MCL, and meniscus as a rookie in 2016.

The 6-6, 310 lb guard has played in six career games, starting in five.

Continue Reading

Trending