Wash comes to Jacksonville from the Seattle Seahawks, where he worked under Bradley in the same capacity. Part of the Seahawks’ signature defensive was the Leo position. It is a hybrid linebacker/defensive end spot for pass rushing specialists to focus on getting in after the passer.
That pretty much defines Babin.
Babin was claimed off waivers after the Philadelphia Eagles let him walk midway through the season. He came in to be the Jags’ most effective pass rusher even though his productivity has waned since his last Pro Bowl season in 2011. With the Leo, Babin will be able to focus entirely on what he does best: sack the quarterback.
Babin was long speculated to be the Jags’ Leo and now it’s been confirmed that he’s the guy, or, more likely, one of the guys for the position. Wash said, “I think we’ve got one. Now we’ll see if we can find another two.”
In Philadelphia Babin was specializing in a pretty similar role. The Eagles played a “Wide 9″ defense that is essentially a 4-3 with a defensive end playing the nine technique out wide of the tight end in order to give him a much greater opportunity and focus on sacking the quarterback.
We’ll see who else gets name to the Leo position as roster evaluation continues.
– Luke N. Sims
You can also find me on Twitter @LukeNSims