Jaguars wide receivers don’t get favorable ranking on a recent list
The Jacksonville Jaguars had a pretty good wide receiver corps in 2020 and heading into the 2021 NFL regular season, the unit looks like a strength. Nevertheless, they didn’t get a favorable spot in a recent list.
Steve Palazzolo of Pro Football Focus recently ranked all 32 NFL wide receiver corps and the Jaguars landed at 23rd. To his credit, he says that Jacksonville’s wide receiver unit has the potential to move up the list. Palazzolo notes that DJ Chark is tied for 21st in receiving grade on 10-plus yard receptions over the last two seasons. He adds that Jones has the sixth-highest contested catch rate in the league over the last three years.
Palazzolo sees sophomore Laviska Shenault as a wild card. He points out that he had a solid rookie campaign but had the fifth-lowest average depth of a target. He believes that if he can stay healthy, there may not be a better-rounded wide receiver on the Jags’ roster. Palazzolo also mentions Collin Johnson, another player entering his second season in the NFL. He says that will be battling for targets after posting a 73.4 overall grade as a rookie.
Later in his breakdown, Palazzolo expresses concern about the Jaguars’ tight end room. He notes that Chris Manhertz hasn’t been a solid receiver option throughout his career and adds that James O’Shaughnessy has been a career backup. Palazzolo sees Luke Farrell mainly contributing as a run blocker. Furthermore, he doesn’t see Tim Tebow having a meaningful role in the Jaguars’ passing game. The analyst believes the Jaguars’ wideouts have potential and thinks that they may be better off leaning on more three and four wide receiver sets.
The Jacksonville Jaguars wide receivers can be a top 10 unit in 2021.
Chark made the Pro Bowl in 2019 and Shenault showed flashes last season. They both played well in 2020 but the Jaguars’ lack of consistency at quarterback affected both. Had they had more stability at the position, Jacksonville’s passing game would have been more effective. On the bright side, the Jags drafted Trevor Lawrence first overall in this year’s selection meeting. The former Tiger will be a significant upgrade at quarterback despite the fact he’s a rookie.
The wide receiver corps is currently in better shape than it was last season even though they let Keelan Cole walk away in free agency. Jones has only had one 1,000-yard receiving season in his career but he’s scored 32 touchdowns over the last four years. Also, Johnson was an unknown commodity but he could very well earn a big role on the offense this upcoming season.
Palazzolo should’ve graded the Jaguars’ tight end separately, as it drags down their wide receiver group. Either way, the Jags have a well-rounded offense ahead of the 2021 season.
The Jaguars needed a quarterback that could take advantage of all the skill-position players on the roster. They now have one in Lawerence. Chark and Jones have already shown they can perform at a high level, so it wouldn’t be surprising to see both post a 1,000-yard season. Moreover, the Jaguars’ wide receiver unit should rank among the top half of the NFL by the end of the season.