Dec 1, 2013; Cleveland, OH, USA; Jacksonville Jaguars wide receiver Cecil Shorts (84) catches the game winning pass in the end zone while being defended by Cleveland Browns cornerback Joe Haden (23) in the fourth quarter at FirstEnergy Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

Jaguars Who Could Make the Leap - Cecil Shorts III

This offseason, we’re going to take a look at some of the players on the Jacksonville Jaguars’ roster who could potentially make the leap from relative unknown to Pro Bowler or better. With the departure of Maurice Jones-Drew, the Jaguars no longer have an identifiable “face of the franchise”, but there are numerous players who could fill that void with their play on the field.

Today we highlight one of my favorite players on the roster – Cecil Shorts III.

In the news lately because of rumors of an impending contract extension, Shorts is arguably the best player drafted under former general manager Gene Smith. Mostly ineffective in his rookie season, Shorts started to play extremely well in the middle of the 2012 season. Since then, Shorts has proven himself to be the most explosive playmaker on offense. Here are his statistics from his 2 seasons starting:

 
Targets
Rec.
Yds/Rec
YAC/Rec.
TD
Drops
PFF Overall Grade
20121015517.86.7792.2
20131176611.84.33103.2

Shorts burst onto the scene in 2012 and was one of the most explosive receivers in the entire league, as evidenced by his outstanding 17.8 yard per reception average. He wasn’t as effective in 2013, but most of that can be attributed to a significantly increased workload and the lack of his starting wide receiver across from him.

It shouldn’t be understated how important 2014 is for Cecil Shorts. He is a very good receiver and, while his ceiling is probably as an elite number 2 wide out, he has a lot of value. Still, Shorts needs to show he can stay healthy if he wants to cement himself as a long term piece and earn a new, lucrative contract. It’s impossible to predict injuries, but I foresee Shorts having a monster season if he plays all 16 games.

2014 Statistical Projections: 75 receptions, 1250 yards, 8 touchdowns

 

- Daniel Lago

 

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