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Monday, 27 October 2014

Jacksonville Jaguars: Cover A Concern Against Miami

Don’t get the impression that someone like Miami Dolphins wide receiver Mike Wallace doesn’t know what’s going on in Jacksonville. In fact, the speedy pass catcher probably already has an idea of how he would like to try and carve up the Jaguars secondary since cornerback Alan Ball has been ruled out of Sunday’s game against Miami and second-year corner Dwayne Gratz has been listed as questionable to play as well.

Still, these Jaguars are going to face the challenge, send the next man up and use the game plan that was drawn up earlier in the week to cover the Dolphins receivers.

“We’ve had to adjust a little bit,” Head Coach Gus Bradley said, on

Maybe a little bit is an understatement. The Dolphins have proven that their offense is getting better – and that is without running back Knowshon Moreno.

“Sometimes certain position groups may get hit throughout the season, and this week it’s the corner spot.”

Ball, who on Wednesday sought a second opinion on a biceps injury sustained against Cleveland Sunday, officially was ruled out Friday. While Ball was considered very doubtful throughout the week, Gratz’s situation was more of a surprise.

He practiced Wednesday, and then experienced tightness in his hip Thursday. He was listed as limited on the Thursday injury report, then did not practice Friday.

“We’ll see how it goes tomorrow, then on game day we’ll work it out and go from there,” Gratz said. “There was no specific thing. It was just tight and we tried to loosen it up and go out there and play. It didn’t work out as well as I planned it, but we’re being smart and doing the right things.”

Gratz was injured earlier in the season when he sustained a concussion in the team’s loss to San Diego.

Right now, Gratz is questionable – and has not been ruled out of the game on Sunday. Should he not be able to go, here is how the Jaguars will proceed with coverage.

The scenarios at corner are then as follows:

* If Gratz plays, he will start at left corner with Demetrius McCray moving to Ball’s right corner spot. Gratz started the first four games of the season at left corner before sustaining a concussion. McCray has started there since, getting roughly twice the reps as Gratz the past three weeks.

*If Gratz doesn’t play, second-year Jeremy Harris will start at right corner with McCray staying at left. It would be Harris’ first NFL start.

*Veteran Will Blackmon will remain the nickel corner, but would move to corner if Harris or McCray are injured. In that scenario, safety Sherrod Martin likely will move to the nickel to replace Blackmon.



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