Oct 27 2012; Miami, FL, USA; Western Kentucky Hilltoppers wide receiver Willie McNeal (10) runs the ball and gets a block from quarterback Kawaun Jakes (6) on Florida International Golden Panthers safety Johnathan Cyprien (7) in the second half at FIU Stadium. Western Kentucky defeated FIU 14-6. Mandatory Credit: Robert Mayer-USA TODAY Sports

Johnathan Cyprien A Giant Among Rookies


There is a lot of excitement around the Jacksonville Jaguars right now.  A major part of that is that this year’s NFL Draft yielded a lot of quality players for the Jags and there are even more players who have a shot at seeing significant playing time, including three players who appear to be immediate starters.  One of the most impressive players, per most accounts, is second-round pick safety Johnathan Cyprien.

Coming out of small Florida International University, Cyprien is a big presence in the three day rookie minicamp this weekend.  Jaguars.com Senior Writer John Oehser notes in his weekly “O-Zone” provides a significant endorsement of Cyprien after just one day of practice:

Cyprien was the most noticeable player. He is a physical specimen who looked significantly more athletic and ready for the moment on Friday than most other players on the field. He broke on passes with what appeared to be unusual instinct and ease and the hands he showed on a late-practice interception off Matt Scott were, for lack of a better word, spectacular. I don’t pretend to be able to project a player’s career off one minicamp practice, but it’s hard to look like you belong in the NFL more than Cyprien did Friday.

Oehser, who I feel usually restricts his comments to high-brow, reserved appreciation rather than the comparative gushing that he did in favor of Cyprien, is obviously impressed by what Cyprien can do.  And rightly so.

Cyprien oozes potential.  Since the NFL Scouting Combine he has had eyes on him.  He has said the right things, impressed in workouts, and he has the tape to back up everything that he is.  Florida International may be a small school, but even at the NFL level Cyprien appears to have the makings of a giant.  He has the potential to be a real force.

Gus Bradley and Dave Caldwell have rebuilt this Jaguars secondary in one draft and Cyprien is a major part of that.  I’m excited to hear that he is appearing to be everything as advertised.  It’s good to have some excitement building around the Jaguars and the players they have, even if it is year one of a rebuild.

- Luke N. Sims

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