After Luke Joeckel’s Injury: Who Plays Left Guard?
Jacksonville placed Luke Joeckel on the Injured Reserve list on Tuesday. The Jaguars face the difficult task of filling his left guard position.
Luke Joeckel’s injury on Sunday forces the Jacksonville Jaguars to make a tough decision on how to fill his left guard spot. Joeckel was selected as the number two overall selection in the 2013 draft. He was projected to be one of the building blocks of the Jacksonville franchise.
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Joeckel started as the left guard against Green Bay in week one because free agent Kelvin Beachum won the starting left tackle job in training camp. Joeckel appeared to be adapting to the position change when in London, he suffered a knee injury.
Two questions are emerging during the bye week, “Who should Jacksonville play at left guard” and “Should the Jaguars move on from Luke Joeckel?”
How Jacksonville answers those questions.
First, Jacksonville could keep Joeckel on the IR and then try to re-sign him for the 2017 season. It is possible that the Jaguars could designate his return as early as week eight. If possible, Joeckel will play against Buffalo in week twelve.
Wednesday, the Jaguars signed Bryce Harris, a 6’6, 300 lb free agent tackle, who most likely will be as a backup tackle. Chris Reed will become the new left guard since he started against Baltimore and Patrick Omameh will back up each guard.
Next, Sunday in London was Luke Joeckel’s last game as a Jacksonville Jaguar. Joeckel becomes an unrestricted free agent in 2017. He is considered as a first round draft bust by many people. It is hard to imagine that he would be able to justify receiving a big pay raise. Consequentially, Joeckel remains on the IR and signs with another team in 2017.
Really, Jacksonville should bring in a free agent. The logical acquisition to be the left guard playing next to Beachum is Ron Leary, of the Dallas Cowboys. This is a major step towards developing the running game. The Jacksonville Jaguars desperately need to run the ball.