Coming to the Defense of Tyson Alualu


With the lull of the offseason comes the inevitable offseason ranking of players. Bleacher Report has gone all out and embarked on a series called B/R NFL 1,000 to rank players at every position in football. They use a “Madden” style ratings system where each player is given a score for each category relevant to the position of interest. Luke used these rankings in one of his recent articles about Jacksonville’s offensive line.

Normally I wouldn’t think much of these articles because they are what they are: one person’s opinion about a very large sample of players. But their latest rankings of defensive tackles can’t go by without some comment here for Jaguar fans. The Jaguars have three representatives in the top 64 defensive tackles according to Bleacher Report:

  • #63 – Tyson Alualu
  • #45 – C.J. Mosley
  • #27 – Terrance Knighton

Yes, they have Tyson Alualu – one of our starting defensive tackles – ranked 18 spots behind one of our back-up defensive linemen.

You have me ranked WHERE?!?

Without breaking down the pure football associated with the rankings, let’s discuss the elephant in the room: this article is intimating that the Jaguars intentionally started a worse player over someone on the bench.

The fact of the matter is Alualu played on one leg the entire season and was still the most consistent defensive tackle on the team. He’s better than C.J. Mosley.

The rankings are fairly solid, but I didn’t want Jaguar fans going into the season thinking our 2010 first round pick was the 3rd best defensive tackle on the team. Alualu was solid if unspectacular last year, so it’s hard to argue him being much higher on the list, but there is a reason he started ahead of Mosley and Douzable.

Other than that, most players seem to be rated where they should be. Knighton is on the cusp of some elite tackles and after showing up to workouts at a reasonable weight he could be prime for a Pro Bowl season.

If the Jaguars can couple a healthy Alualu and an in-shape Knighton with Jeremy Mincey and DE draft pick, Jacksonville should have an elite defensive line in 2012.

– Daniel Lago