Six Jacksonville Jaguars On The Hot Seat in 2015
An interesting conversation was had on Monday morning on a local sports talk radio program concerning the Jacksonville Jaguars.
The conversation started when it was determined the Houston Texans only had one player from its 2013 Draft class make an impact on the current roster. The Jaguars had four starters from that draft class, but have they become starters because they were real stars in the league or were they starter out of necessity due to the roster being so thin?
To be honest, it is more the latter than the former and for some players, this is a make or break season on the current 90-man roster.
Three of those players on this list of Jaguars who must have a solid 2015 or even training camp to keep their position with the franchise. Much has been made about the changes and additions in both free agency and the recent NFL Draft that should help this team with depth, quality starters, and most of all wins.
Who will step forward, who will remain where they are and who will take a step back?
These guys could be in a make or break season in 2015.
This is Joeckel’s third season in the league. We can basically wipe out his rookie season because he broke his ankle. His second season was a year of highs and lows, but there were games where Joeckel got manhandled by defensive ends. This is the season where he must put it all together to avoid the “bust” label. Joeckel was the second pick of the 2013 NFL Draft. It is time he starts playing like he was worthy of the pick.
He had better play better than he did in ’14. Beadles was the team’s prized free agent signing last season and he performed well, but not great. There was a belief he and Joeckel would form a wall on the left side of the line. Had that been the case, there would not have been as many sacks given up as there were. Also, AJ Cann would not have been drafted to challenge him, either.
When he was taken in the second round in 2013, everyone thought it was one of the better picks on the Draft. Cyprien looked like a man coming into camp. Since then, he has been average at best. He has good talent and could finally use this season to have his breakout year. The Jaguars picked Cyprien and three other defensive backs in the ’13 draft. None have been outstanding. This year, Cyprien has to be.
I hate to add him to this list, but there is a reason TJ Yeldon heard his name called in the second round. Robinson was having a good season when he was injured and placed on IR. He showed flashes of brilliance and then at times, he looked average. Last season, Robinson replaced Toby Gerhart. This season, we will return kicks and share carries with Yeldon. Robinson must take the next step to stay a starter.
All you need to know is this … Branch was the second round pick before Bryan Anger in 2012. Right now, of the 2012 draft class, Anger has been the best selection. Branch for his size and agility, should be doing it and doing it well. Of course, he isn’t. He showed flashes last season, but injuries shelved him for the year. There is a real opportunity for Branch to come in and make some noise now that Dante Fowler, Jr is gone for the season. It’s up to Branch to step forward and play like he wants to keep his job.
He is 33 years old, had eight sacks last season and was supposed to lose his job to Dante Fowler his season. Fowler is now on the shelf for 2015 and the team not only needs another eight sacks from No. 91, but they also need him to become the defensive leader on the field. Clemons was brought in from Seattle to mentor this unit. Can Gus Bradley count on him to finally do his job?