2. Sidney Jones – Jacksonville Jaguars
NFL head coaches tend to speak in cliches and be secretive about their plans. However, Urban Meyer said not long after being hired that the Jaguars wanted to revamp the secondary and bolstering their defensive front. True to his word, the former Ohio State head coach, along with the front office, focused on fortifying a defense that ranked 31st in points allowed in 2020.
The team’s brass signed several players in free agency but they also brought back a handful of key contributors, including cornerback Sidney Jones. The 2017 second-round pick joined the Jaguars last year after being waived by the Philadelphia Eagles and quickly carved a niche in Jacksonville’s secondary. However, an Achilles injury cut his season short.
Last year, Jones appeared in nine games with six starts and logged 26 total tackles, one forced fumble, nine passes defensed, and one interception. Had he stayed healthy, he might’ve signed a multi-year deal. Instead, the Jaguars brought him back on a one-year contract. The Washington product joined the starting lineup last season because the team had no one else to turn to. This year, things won’t be as easy (not that it’s easy to play in the NFL, let alone start).
The Jags signed Shaquill Griffin and drafted Tyson Campbell. Moreover, they re-signed Tre Herndon. There’s no such thing as having enough playmakers and Jacksonville’s cornerback room looks in good shape ahead of the 2021 season. Nevertheless, Jones could be the odd man out if the numbers don’t work out.