Jaguars GM David Caldwell says winning now is a priority
By David Levin
When asked at his press conference in Indianapolis on Wednesday, Jacksonville Jaguars GM David Caldwell said winning now is still a priority.
It was a simple question. When asked about his thoughts on the current wide receivers on the Jacksonville Jaguars rosters, team general manager David Caldwell said he was happy where the team stands now.
That does not mean this team won’t look to improve the position in free agency or through the NFL Draft. The pass catchers who played last season (without Marqise Lee), weren’t as proficitant as everyone had hoped prior to the start of the 2018 preseason. Now, faced with a need for play makers, will the Jaguars still look to add dependable hands and speed to aid the passing game?
David Caldwell, who is entering his seventh season here in Jacksonville reiterated to the media the main focus of the organization is to get better and to win football games, something this team did not do well in 2018.
"“The priority is winning, and winning now,” Caldwell said."
The Jaguars come into the 2019 season with many questions about the direction of the franchise and whether Caldwell, along with head coach Doug Marrone and Tom Coughlin, the team’s Executive Vice-President of Football Operations, can turn things around swiftly. While owner Shad Khan gave all three a vote of confidence, progress is expected.
The three in question know it. So do the players in the locker room and the city of Jacksonville, where fans want to see this team march back to the playoffs.
Caldwell is still optimistic about the players this team is building a foundation with.
"“We feel like we still have a core of players we can win with,” Caldwell said. “It needs a little bit of retooling and it needs a little bit of reshuffling and an influx of some talent – whether it’s draft picks or free agents. Then, we can hit the ground running come September next year.”"
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Amongst the topics Caldwell fielded questions from the media, the subject of quarterback play,, the wide receivers and the direction the team will take in free agency and the NFL Draft were most prevalent.
- The Jaguars must make a decision on the future of Blake Bortles. Caldwell said the fifth-year starter is still on the roster and part of the mix of signal callers the team may have to start the 2019 season.
- The Jaguars will pick up the fifth-year option for cornerback Jalen Ramsey.
- The Jaguars can be aggressive in free agency and the NFL Draft.
"“We’ll take it day by day,” Caldwell said of Bortles and his status with the team. “When that time comes, we’ll address it with him and obviously address it with you guys in the media.”"
Injuries hit this organization hard last season. The team has glaring needs at quarterback, the offensive line, tight end and is in need of playmakers. The front office must determine if it can keep the players on the roster who do not leave via free agency and be successful or change is needed.
Caldwell declined to discuss if drafting a quarterback with the No. 7 pick in April was on the table.
"“The goal is to put the best team on the field. Obviously, the quarterback is a key part of that, but we have to make sure we have the best team – we have the best offense, the best defense. The quarterback will slide in place when it is time for that player to come in place,” Caldwell said.“It may not be ‘til the draft, it may be through free agency, but when that time comes we want to make sure we have the best team offensively and defensively around that position.”"