What’s that you say? It’s only the fourth day of practice and that idiot Jason is predicting the final 53? Well, not exactly…
Right now, I’ve got 38 players making the team with 15 roster spots remaining for 50 or so players. However, let’s not forget that each team can have eight players on their practice squad (PS). Now where does that leave everyone else? Well here are a few observations.
1. The DL is heavily rotated and there seems to be some pretty decent talent there, so the team could opt to go DL heavy in order to keep the rotation fresh.
2. This is a pass happy league and the LBs need to cover better than in the past. Additionally, even though this is a 4-3 team at heart, there could be more and more nickel defense, as witnessed by the signing of Aaron Ross. It’s the future people.
3. The WR group is open to competition. Robinson makes it, Shorts makes it and Blackmon make it. The rest is up for grabs. Here’s a theory, they keep 6, so long as one of the WR can return kicks/punts.
4. There are a ton of rookies and first years on the roster, and therefore there are a ton of PS eligible players. However, the thing to keep in mind with these players is that you can’t put a guy on the PS that is capable of starting without the risk of losing him. It’s potential players generally.
5. Back to the secondary. As I said before, the nickel package will probably see the field more than any other package of the defense. So, does that mean more CBs or more S? I tend to think that the team will lead towards keeping more CBs with the intent of cross training the players in case of emergency. Remember, Ross played some safety with the Giants, Mathis could play safety, and I’m sure others could too.
Here is the roster, with the potential players in red and the locks in black.
Offense (18) (7) (25)
QB — Gabbert, Henne (2)
RB — Jones-Drew, Jennings, Owens (3) Jones, Parmele (2)
WR — Robinson, Blackmon, Shorts (3) Evans, Elliot, Thomas (3)
TE — Lewis, Miller, Potter (3)
OT — Monroe, Britton, Bradfield (3) Whimper (1)
OG — Spitz, Rackley, Nwaneri (3)
OC — Meester (1) Estes (1)
Defense (17) (8) (25)
DE — Mincey, Lane, Branch (3) Davis, Selvie, Morgan (3)
DT — Knghton, Alualu, Mosley (3) Pendleton, Smith (2)
LB — Poz, Smith, Allen (3) Stanford, Marshall (2)
CB — Cox, Ross, Mathis, Rutland, Middleton (5) Harris (1)
S — Landry, Prosinski, Lowery (3)
Special Teams (3)
ST — Scobee, Cain, Anger (3)
John Chick, Session
IR (1 and counting)
Reggie Corner (DB)
Practice Squad (3)
Brewster(OC), Drew Nowak (DT), Mike Brown (WR) — the other 5 spots will probably focus on the offensive line and offensive skill positions or DBs.
You may ask yourself, “wow, Jason went really heavy on the defense!”, and that would be an astute observation. The defense is the strength of the team. There are players with similar talent levels that reside on the defense. These players no longer have PS eligibility (Morgan) or would be picked up in an instant (Davis). I went through the roster with the idea that the team should focus on their strengths and make them stronger. Plus, Heavy means Defensive Line. I tend to think it can be a strength, especially with the news that Branch is flashing some skills. I had six wide receivers making the team because at this point, no one has really stood out besides Elliot it seems, and he has no NFL tape.
So there you have it, my way to early Final 53. I’m sure the Jaguars will experience injuries throughout the preseason that will affect the roster and I’m sure camp casualties (from other teams, especially interior OL) will be brought in to see what they have left.