Jacksonville Jaguars: 5 players that must step up in 2021

Fans of the Jacksonville Jaguars at Nissan Stadium (Imagn Images photo pool)
Fans of the Jacksonville Jaguars at Nissan Stadium (Imagn Images photo pool) /
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Jacksonville Jaguars
Josh Allen #41 of the Jacksonville Jaguars and Marcus Mariota #8 of the Tennessee Titans (James Gilbert/Getty Images) /

. Josh Allen, defensive end. 1. player. 52. .

The Jacksonville Jaguars missed Josh Allen last season.

Defensive end Josh Allen showed in his rookie year he has what it takes to play at a high level, logging 44 total tackles, 11 tackles for a loss, 10.5 sacks, and two forced fumbles. Alas, he dealt with a knee injury that limited him to eight games last season and hindered his growth as a player.

There’s no reason to think Allen won’t be able to get back on track and precisely because of that, the team should have high expectations for him in 2021. After all, if he’s one of their best defenders, why wouldn’t the Jaguars’ brass demand more from him?

The Jags bolstered their defensive line this offseason, signing Jihad Ward and Roy Robertson-Harris. They also brought back Adam Gotsis and Dawuane Smoot. Nevertheless, none of those players are as good as Allen. They all should be part of the defensive line rotation but the Kentucky standout should be the team’s main EDGE defender along with sophomore K’Lavon Chaisson.

Keep in mind that Jags could still add another pass-rusher early in the draft, but even if they do, Allen should still be the team’s top option to generate pressure up front. Then, there’s the fact the team may switch to a 3-4 scheme. If that’s the case, Allen will have to rush opposing quarterbacks standing up more often. Jacksonville’s defense logged just 18 tackles last season and will need Allen to be his old dominant self if they want to increase that number.

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