James Sample is set to compete for the starting free safety position with the Jacksonville Jaguars. He made that official on Wednesday, signing his rookie contract to join the Jaguars.
Sample is the third of eight draft picks to sign with the Jaguars so far this offseason.
The Jaguars are excited to bring him on board as he could finally fill the black hole that is the free safety position. While the team signed Sergio Brown in the offseason, it was expected that they would go after a young safety in this year’s draft class. They did, they just waited until the fourth round to do it.
Sample’s counterpart at Louisville, Gerod Holliman, played free safety and he was surprised to know he would be competing for the starting free safety position with the Jaguars, instead of providing strong safety depth. He has met the challenge head on thus far and believes he can be an effective free safety for the Jaguars.
It’s good to see the team finding value at the free safety position and targeting a player who fits their scheme. Josh Evans hasn’t panned out and other fits like Winston Guy have also proven near-disastrous for the team. Sample is a long defensive back who knows how to tackle, which should be a major improvement over the players the Jaguars have fielded over the last couple of years.
Sample is excited to be here and it’s exciting to see what he can do in his first season with the team. He’ll have to beat out Sergio Brown, but he sounds like he has the motivation and ability to make it at least an interesting competition.
"“Now, it’s time to get down to business and I look forward to it” – James Sample"
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