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Facing Better Talent in Practice: Which Jaguars Players Will Benefit Most?

June 18th, 2012 at 2:10 PM
By Matt Goudreau

'Jaguars-Bills' photo (c) 2009, Karl May - license:

NFL teams want talent. They want competitiveness. For the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2011, they lacked both of those characteristics in some positions on the football field. How did that transition to wins for a team like Jacksonville? Well, most of the time it didn't. Opposing teams don't have to face star power on game day, and either do the Jaguars in their own practices. Obviously, adding weapons on offense will improve quarterback play, but let's look at other positions where key additions should make an impact also.

With the Jaguars revamping the WR group this offseason, it's safe to say there will be an increase in talent/competitiveness in this years training camp. No longer will cornerbacks Rashean Mathis, Derek Cox and William Middleton have to face Jason Hill, and Chastin West as the teams top receivers, but they will be facing the likes of Justin Blackmon and Laurent Robinson every day. An added product of talent, will make not only the receiving group better, but the secondary as well. (Continue reading this post…)

On the defensive side of the ball, a focal point in the offseason was improving the pass rush. Hence, the Jaguars drafted Clemson DE Andre Branch in the second round. Branch is an explosive pass rusher who lead the ACC in sacks last year with 10.5. How does this make other positions better? Starting tackles Eugene Monroe and Eben Britton line up against some explosive pass rushers in the AFC South. Dwight Freeney, Robert Mathis, Connor Barwin, J.J. Watt, and Derrick Morgan all have the ability to get to the quarterback. The Jaguars tackles will be up against Jeremy Mincey, and now Andre Branch as the two primary defensive ends in camp this year. Ultimately, this should help both starting tackles work on their technique in protecting Blaine Gabbert when it counts.

There are direct/indirect effects of the the offseason acquisitions that the Jacksonville Jaguars made this offseason, and those are just a few.  I expect even better play from the offensive line, and secondary because of the added talent they will be facing in practice this summer. It's hard to reach your full potential as a player when your not facing above average talent at such critical positions every day in practice.

Finally, the Jaguars will have that.


Tags: Football, Jacksonville, Jacksonville Jaguars, NFL

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