Jacksonville Jaguars: Who will be the team leader on defense?

Which player will step up and become the leader of the Jacksonville Jaguars locker room this coming season?

The Jacksonville Jaguars locker-room leader last season was Calais Campbell. He was a calm, giant of a man who led by example on and off the field.

Sadly, he was a casualty of the salary cap and was traded to the Baltimore Ravens for a 2020 draft pick. The on-field defensive leadership was sadly lacking.  This team needs a field general to help the younger players on the field to learn their position to make plays.

At times last season, it appeared that players tried to make plays by leaving their assigned areas to “help” others leaving huge gaps for opposing teams to use to their advantage.  Our last good field general was linebacker Paul Posluszny, who has been sorely missed.

Now, it’s time for a new leader to step forward.

Where do the Jacksonville Jaguars start?  I believe the team’s leader needs to be a member of the line or linebacking group. Their leader really can’t be a rookie or even a second-year player because the new guys are still learning the NFL game. He must play the majority of the snaps. This guy needs to understand the roles of the entire defense and not just his individual role. Finally, he needs to have the personality of a leader.

The obvious answer to this problem is our brand new middle linebacker Joe Schobert, a former member of the Cleveland Browns.  He is described by writers and teammates as a leader on the field.

Per John Buhler of FanSided.com, “The 26-year-old linebacker has been a three-down player for the last three seasons.  Schobert racked up four interceptions and two forced fumbles in 2019, emerging as one of the defenses true difference-making talents.”

Part of this same article described the Jaguars linebacking corps as “putrid” and the team certainly needs to change that perception. His career stats are  408 tackles, 15 tackles for loss, 8.5 sacks, 6 interceptions, and 7 forced fumbles. He had two of his best statistical games in 2019  against the Baltimore Ravens and the New England Patriots so he steps up against the better teams.

The Browns loss is the Jaguars gain, as Nicholas Perlich of With the First Pick wrote

“There is one move, or lack thereof, that the Browns could end up regretting this fall. Joe Schobert was easily the best linebacker for the Browns and a key leader and playmaker on the defensive side of the ball.”

The Browns, not known for great personnel decisions, let him walk.

Schobert has played the vast majority of games in his four seasons with the Browns.  His stats are good and his reputation is good as well.  He could easily become the highlight of the Jacksonville Jaguars offseason and a fixture of our linebacking corps for many years to come.

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