After a solid sophomore season, linebacker Myles Jack is poised to breakout and become a star on an already loaded Jacksonville Jaguars defense.
Myles Jack wasn’t down.
Since we’ve cleared that up, let’s move on to discussing what we can expect out of the former second round pick as he enters his third season.
Entering the NFL Draft as an underclassman out of UCLA, Jack had all the talent and production in college to warrant a high first round pick. There were whispers that the Jaguars were considering the athletic defender with their first pick in the 2016 Draft, which thankfully ended up being Jalen Ramsey.
As Jack tumbled down the board and ultimately into the second round, the Jaguars couldn’t wait any longer and they traded up to acquire the former college stud. Jack fell solely because of injury concerns and the Jaguars took advantage.
After an underwhelming rookie season (much of the blame for likely falls on an overmatched coaching staff), Jack had a terrific second year in the league.
In a recent article about players poised to break out in their second or third season, Pete Prisco of CBS Sports highlighted the speedy linebacker:
"Myles Jack, LB, JaguarsAs a rookie, Jack was a positionless player. He started at strong-side linebacker, but played inside in the Jaguars’ nickel packages and played only a quarter of the team’s snaps. Last season, he was moved to middle linebacker on a full-time basis and stayed on the field for 97 percent of the team’s snaps. It took Jack a bit to adjust to playing in the middle, but as the season moved along he became much more comfortable. In the playoffs he was outstanding and gave a hint of what will come in 2018. Jack is fast, tough, can cover against the pass and improved his instincts as the season moved along. He had a tendency to overrun plays early in the season, but that changed in the postseason. He will be a dominant sideline-to-sideline player in 2018."
Jack along with Telvin Smith are arguably the most talented pair of linebackers in the entire league. They are certainly the fastest, but any improvements Jack makes in 2018 will make the middle of the Jaguars defense that much harder to attack.
As we head towards 2018, it’s getting harder and harder to find weakness on the Jacksonville defensive lineup. If Jack takes that step from solid starter to elite player, this could be a historically great unit – again.