After Marcedes Lewis put together an impressive 58 receptions for 700 yards and 10 touchdowns in 2010, many of us in the fan base worried that the Jacksonville Jaguars may hand a big contract to a player developing into a diva. Lewis got his big contract (five years, $34 million) and while his numbers never returned to 2010 form, he has proven that concerns he may become a diva player were not needed.
Instead, we’ve seen Marcedes Lewis develop into a professional that helps young Jacksonville Jaguars teams try to succeed despite poor roster strength. While Lewis was expected to be a pillar of strength for the Jaguars for the next five years back in 2010, he has handled his long slide with grace and now he has been surpassed on the depth chart.
Julius Thomas is now with the Jacksonville Jaguars and he brings with him 24 receiving touchdowns over the last two seasons (just three less than all of Lewis’ career). Thomas is coming in to be the receiving tight end the Jaguars always wanted and Lews is going to be relegated to the second tight end role. With that comes a change in salary (one year, $2.65 million compared to the $6.65 he was scheduled to make in base salary) and the lack of prestige on a Jaguars roster that is seeing an overhaul.
As the last remaining pick from a Shack Harris led draft, Lewis has proven he still has value to three different general managers and coaching staffs. It would be surprising to se him with another team for 2015. Lewis is committed to accepting his new role and proving that he still a professional. He is eager to coexist with Julius Thomas and show that he can succeed when he isn’t the number one option. Lewis is still a leader for this young Jaguars team and he knows it, saying,”I’ve got a tight ends coach that respects me and respects what I do, and I love him and I’m going to continue to go out there and work and give all that I’ve got.” He’s ready to get to work for the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Hopefully this yields some positive results for young quarterback Blake Bortles. Bortles needs reliable receivers and quality players around him. Lewis brings the most experience to the Jaguars’ offense and he can help Bortles in his development. While Lewis may not be a budding young star like he once was, having a professional who is willing to get to work and give it his all will be invaluable to such a young offense.
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