The Jacksonville Jaguars made several moves to try and upgrade the offensive line this offseason, including a late-stage free agency signing in veteran center Stefen Wisniewski.
Wisniewski didn’t have as big a market for his services as many expected after he left the Oakland Raiders, but the Jaguars were able to snag him on a one-year deal to battle with second year player Luke Bowanko for the starting center job. After two preseason games, head coach Gus Bradley has seen enough to declare Wiz the winner:
This was probably a tough decision given how even the two lineman were playing, but it certainly benefits the Jaguars either way. Bowanko is definitely solid depth along the line, especially if he cross-trains at different positions, something that is evidently the plan:
This makes a lot of sense as one of Bowanko’s strengths is his agility and ability to move, especially for a guy with his size and length (6’6″, 300 lbs).
"“It was a very difficult decision the way Bo was playing because he did a lot of good things… I think just for the team’s sake where we’re at, how it felt when we watched and evaluated him, Wis had the edge.”– Jaguars head coach Gus Bradley"
Ultimately, this decision probably just came down to experience. Wisniewski has been a solid starting center in this league for a while now, and the Jaguars have more than enough youth on the offensive side of the ball already. Bowanko might have a higher ceiling, but right now the Jaguars are focusing on getting Blake Bortles in the best environment to succeed. Wisniewski has shown enough after recovering from his offseason shoulder surgery to make himself the best option to stabilize the offensive line.
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