Can Jacksonville Jaguars safety Ronnie Harrison become the leader of a secondary that has undergone major changes this offseason?
Going into his third season, Jacksonville Jaguars safety Ronnie Harrison is entering an interesting point in his career, having to prove whether or not he can lead a transformed unit from when he entered the NFL.
And the Jaguars coaching staff needs another playmaker on defense to step forward with all the changes that were made to the roster this offseason.
Jacksonville’s secondary in 2018 – when Harrison was a rookie – consisted of Jalen Ramsey, A.J. Bouye, Tashaun Gipson, and Barry Church. Now the secondary is laced with youth and in need of a leader with its overhaul. Harrison is still learning the NFL game, but could he emerge as the voice of stability for the Jaguars?
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Harrison has shown glimpses of being a consistent starting safety in the NFL and has the potential to lead the young secondary going forward.
In 22 games as a starter, Harrison has tallied 103 tackles, 12 passes defensed, and three interceptions. Last season – when Harrison started 14 games – the Jaguars allowed 236.1 passing yards per game, which ranked 16th in the league.
Playing on the opposite side of the field from Harrison is Jarrod Wilson, who struggled in his first full season as a starter. Both will play a critical role in keeping the Jacksonville Jaguars secondary from breaking down, which it did last season, ranking 28th in big plays allowed.
Another season where the secondary is shredded by the long passing game and there could be more changes to the roster and the coaching staff for the 2021 season.
With over 20 games under his belt, Harrison is a young star who is ready for a breakout season, especially after last season as he improved downfield coverage. Without a glaring leader on the defensive side of the football, Harrison has a special opportunity to be the voice for the unit. It could also lead to a potential Pro Bowl nod should the former Alabama star step where Donovin Darius is the standard by which Jacksonville Jaguars safeties are compared.
Harrison also plays with a level of emotion on the field that is tangible for his teammates. It’s a factor that will only elevate his leadership.
One thing is certain, in a season that will be full of change and learning for the Jacksonville Jaguars it is imperative that the youthful secondary learns to mesh together quickly.