Today was the final day of a three day mini-camp for the Jaguars. There were 50 players participating with only 23 on the 90 man roster unless waived. 27 players were workout invitees trying desperately to make it in the NFL.
Some players stood out and others didn’t, though we only have the word of the coaches to rely on because the camp was closed to the public.
By all accounts, DE Andre Branch – the Jags 2nd round prospect – has the ability to make it in the NFL. According to defensive line coach Joe Cullen he has exceptional hand speed and can cover a lot of good. In summation, he looks good. Cullen is also excited about two rookies at the camp – Kendrick Adams and Ryan Davis. If the two continue to perform well, they have a “strong maybe” chance of making it.
Other players who have been standing out are wide receivers Kevin Elliott and first round selection Justin Blackmon. Blackmon sat out Sunday with a sore foot. Coach Mike Mularkey says that it’s better to be safe about it than to let him keep practicing and risk something worse. During the camp, Blackmon made plays on balls that were poorly thrown and displayed the hands that made him the Jags’ first round pick.
Bryan Anger, the third round punter, has been impressing the coaches lately, clocking in punts with hangtime in the 5.0+ seconds range. Mularkey said he clocked one at 6.0 which is impressive for an NFL punter. Punts above 5.0 seconds in hangtime are considered above average with most punts ranging from 4.5-4.7.
So far, things have been going well with the rookies and marked improvement has been shown by pretty much all of them – so say the coaches.
At this point in the game it is difficult to separate fiction from reality, but coach speak is all we have to go on currently.
- Luke N. Sims