Can Jacksonville Jaguars defensive end Josh Allen take the next step in becoming the best pass rusher in the NFL?
The stud edge rusher and his teammates have dealt with a different type of offseason until now, adjusting to a virtual offseason and now changes to the way the players are preparing inside TIAA Bank Field for the 2020 season. While players and the coaching staff have worked to adjust, Allen is hoping his second act in the NFL is better than the first, which was pretty darn good.
"Allen is going, “To try to be the best defensive player in the league.” It was a statement he made when he met with the media on Wednesday via virtual conference. Based on the 10.5 sacks he had last season while only playing a percentage of time on the field, this could be his true breakout season."
More from Jacksonville Jaguars News
- Jacksonville Jaguars should welcome Derrick Henry into the kingdom
- Jaguars Rumors: Trent Baalke seems to be getting respect now
- Jaguars News: This division rival might be making a big move
- Former Jacksonville Jaguars S Johnathan Cyprien: “New Profession, Same Standards”
- Jacksonville Jaguars TE Evan Engram officially gets the franchise tag: 3 takeaways
The Jaguars coaching staff is hoping that happens, especially given the fact Calais Campbell isn’t in town anymore and Yannick Ngakoue is looking to make a quick exit as well.
Allen has a new running mate in K’Lavon Chaisson, who told the media he looks up to Allen. Not bad for two young 20-somethings who could be a dynamic pass-rushing duo this season. He is also well aware of what the Jacksonville Jaguars defense must do this season more than anything.
"“Stopping the run is priority No. 1 to us right now,” he said."
Allen’s size and speed on the outside should be another benefit for Todd Wash’s defensive plan this season. There could be a wrinkle or two with a 3-4 sub-package which would allow both edge rusher to play standing up as outside linebackers. The end result, however, is to meet at the quarterback, something Allen did very well last season.
"“Allen, despite playing just over 60 percent of the Jaguars’ defensive snaps because of the presence of defensive ends Yannick Ngakoue and Calais Campbell, registered a team-high 10.5 sacks last season,” John Oehser wrote. “His 22 quarterback pressures were second on the team to Campbell, and he was named to the Pro Bowl following the season.”"
Another season like last year would almost guarantee a trip to Las Vegas after the regular season. Allen, however, may have other ideas – like helping the Jaguars surprise everyone with a trip to the playoffs.
"“I had a high standard last year, and I kind of achieved that goal,” Allen said. “Now, I set the bar really high for myself. I’m looking to stay there and stay at the top. I’m going to push myself as much as I can push each year. This year, I’m not holding anything back, man."
With that kind of intensity on the field and another year to improve on a solid rookie campaign, letting Allen do what he does best – rush the passer – could mean more attention this season. It could also allow for more recognition as one of the best sack artists in the NFL in 2020.