Jaguars O-Line ranked 23rd in the NFL ahead of the 2021 season

Players helmets of the Jacksonville Jaguars (Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports)
Players helmets of the Jacksonville Jaguars (Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports) /

It’s easy to forget football is a team sport with all the attention quarterbacks get. Meanwhile, offensive linemen mostly get the spotlight when they blow a block or allow a sack. The Jacksonville Jaguars recognize the importance of having stability up front and brought back all their starters from 2020. They expect their offensive line to protect rookie quarterback Trevor Lawrence and open running lanes for James Robinson and Travis Etienne.

Ben Rolfe of Pro Football Network recently ranked every NFL team’s offensive line ahead of the 2021 season and the Jags popped up at 23. Rolfe says that Jacksonville’s offensive line is a contrasting story when you compare the interior to their tackles. He points out that Brandon Linder is a top center in the league. He promptly highlights the fact the 2014 third-round pick had just one blown block and committed one measly penalty last season. Rolfe also notes that right guard A.J. Cann and left guard Andrew Norwell gave up combined 28 blocks in over 1,500 snaps.

On the other hand, Rolfe is critical of left tackle Cam Robinson and right tackle Jawaan Taylor. He brings up the fact that Robinson got slapped with the franchise tag despite not being consistent and blowing 20 total blocks in 2020. Rolfe then notes that Taylor was called for six penalties and surrendered 14 sacks on 41 blown pass blocks.

For context, the Houston Texans’ offensive line ranked 30th, the Tennesse Titans showed up at 18th and the Indianapolis Colts landed at 12. The Jaguars need to move a few spots this upcoming season if they want to score more points than they did in 2020 and remain competitive.

The Jacksonville Jaguars believe their offensive line will be better in 2021.

The Jaguars lead the NFL in cap space earlier this year. They could have pursued guard Joe Thuney or left tackle Trent Williams. However, they stayed put, as they believe that having continuity will benefit their offensive line in the long run. Keep in mind that besides bring all their starters from 2020, they also retained offensive line coach George Warhop. Furthermore, they used a second-round pick in this year’s draft on offensive line prospect Walker Little.

Warhop had a sitdown with the media not long ago and said that the Stanford product is as prepared as any other first or second-round pick he’s ever coached. Moreover, the coach described him as a smooth pass blocker and said mentioned that he has unbelievable flexibility. If Little has a solid training camp, he could take over a tackle spot in 2021. The Jags can still kick the tires on former Kansas City Chiefs offensive tackle Mitchell Schwartz, who is still a free agent, if they want to add depth.

In short, the team’s brass didn’t need to give the offensive line an extreme makeover because they have a solid group in place. They just need them to execute better. That’s not unreasonable when you take into account both Robinson and Taylor are still young. If they both perform better, the Jags won’t have trouble running or throwing the ball in 2021.

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