Jacksonville Jaguars Secondary is a Set of Moving Pieces


The Jacksonville Jaguars’ secondary has rightly gotten a lion’s share of the blame for the first losses of the season. They played absolutely horrendously and struggled to stop mediocre receivers to elite level receivers and bad quarterbacks to great quarterbacks. With some changes the unit has largely clamped down on early season mistakes and appears ready to attack the latter half of the season.

But that may have to wait until after the Jaguars take on the Miami Dolphins.

With Alan Ball ruled out against the Dolphins and the status of cornerback Dwayne Gratz still up in the air, the Jaguars’ secondary has started to look more like a set of moving pieces than a well oiled machine or even a set unit.

I can’t explain it any better than Jaguars.com senior writer John Oehser, so I’m going to turn to his piece to highlight just how uncertain everything is heading into the game on Sunday.

"The scenarios at corner are then as follows:*If Gratz plays, he will start at left corner with Demetrius McCray moving to Ball’s right corner spot. Gratz started the first four games of the season at left corner before sustaining a concussion. McCray has started there since, getting roughly twice the reps as Gratz the past three weeks.*If Gratz doesn’t play, second-year Jeremy Harris will start at right corner with McCray staying at left. It would be Harris’ first NFL start.*Veteran Will Blackmon will remain the nickel corner, but would move to corner if Harris or McCray are injured. In that scenario, safety Sherrod Martin likely will move to the nickel to replace Blackmon."

It’s almost enough to make your head spin at this point.

McCray has outplayed Gratz at this point and I’m not certain that Gratz is an improvement over Ball if he does get the chance to replace him in this game. Though, Gratz is more of a known commodity than Jeremy Harris would be for the Jaguars. I have faith in Blackmon’s role at nickel corner and do not want to see him forced to the outside and Sherrod Martin playing corner for the Jaguars, so I’m keeping my fingers crossed that McCray and Harris stay healthy through the game.

Overall, the status of the secondary is cause for concern when looking at Sunday’s game against the Dolphins. The best part about this Jacksonville Jaguars team so far is that nobody has really stood out as an essential piece to the puzzle and the defense has found the “next man up” strategy to work out in recent weeks. Injuries, however, take their toll and for Sunday’s game the Jaguars may be running out of men to call up.