Marcedes Lewis hasn’t been an incredibly productive tight end for some seasons now. After a breakout contract year that saw him get paid, Lewis settled down to be a middle of the road tight end and last year he proved to be an injured middle of the road tight end.
So Dave Caldwell and Gus Bradley turned their sights on bringing in a true receiving tight end this offseason: Julius Thomas.
Marcedes Lewis still has a role on the team as a blocker, though. Thomas is not a proven blocker but Lewis is.
Unfortunately for Lewis, his blocking may no longer be as good as it once was. Lewis graded out negatively in both pass blocking and run blocking per Pro Football Focus, with a particularly bad mark of -5.5 when run blocking. The Jaguars need someone better, especially if they are paying him $6.65 million in 2015 and he only saw the field for half of the 2014 season. That’s a lot of money for a role player who has managed to be effective in what used to be his strength.
Lewis was on the field for significant snaps in eight games in 2014 and in those games the Jaguars only managed three games of 100+ yards rushing the ball. He was also a primary blocker in the abysmal week one and week two losses that saw the Jaguars pick up just 89 rushing yards combined.
As many of us are left wondering if the Jaguars should trade Marcedes Lewis or keep him on board, it’s important to note that he isn’t bringing a lot to the table anymore. He isn’t proving to be an effective blocker, he hasn’t been an effective receiving option for some time, and he is expensive.
The Jaguars can afford to whether another season with Lewis because they have the money to pay him and then let him walk in free agency. They can afford to bring him back for one more year to see whether he can offer something in his age 31 season.
Personally, I would love to see what Lewis can do for the Jaguars and whether he has something left in the tank. It would be great to see a resurgence as he fights to prove he is still valuable even with Julius Thomas on the roster. Unfortunately, the trend for Lewis has been downward for a number of years. I would be (pleasantly) surprised to see him put together a solid 2015 campaign. That would involve quality blocking and receiving. Julius Thomas may be able to open some things up for Marcedes Lewis in the passing game even.
There are just plenty of justified doubts going forward.
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