The Jacksonville Jaguars paid a premium for wide reivers Christian Kirk and Zay Jones in free agency and expect both of them to have a big role on offense in 2022. So far, it looks like the Jags are getting plenty of bang for their buck, as Kirk and Jones are building a good rapport with second-year quarterback Trevor Lawrence.
Head coach Doug Pederson spoke to the local media Tuesday before the Jaguars’ Organized Team Activity session and talked about his early impression of Kirk in Jacksonville. Based on his comments, the former Arizona Cardinals wideout is everything the team expected when they gave him a four-year deal worth $72 million earlier this year.
"He’s been one of the guys that’s been here, learning and picking up the offense. He and Trevor seem to be getting a little bit better each and every day, from being on the same page. And I just liked the way he works in the way he practices. He’s a good role model for the young guys, he doesn’t say a lot when he’s out there. He just goes about his business and has been real steady that way."
Kirk isn’t the only wideout making an impact though. During Tuesday’s OTAs, Lawrence made a money throw to Zay Jones. Here’s the clip, via Jamal St. Cyr of News4JAX.
The Jaguars are counting on Zay Jones and Christian Kirk to make an impact
The Jags raised eyebrows when they signed Kirk and Jones, as neither receiver has posted a 1,000-yard season nor scored more than 10 touchdowns in a year in their respective careers. However, they both have shown flashes when given the chance and the team’s brass think they both can have an impact in 2022.
Jones was recently named Jacksonville’s secret weapon, having shown last season he can thrive in a feature role. Similarly, Kirk became the Cardinals’ top target when DeAndre Hopkins was slapped with a 10-game suspension last year and their offense didn’t miss a beat. The duo is joining a wide receiver corps that includes Marvin Jones Jr., Laquon Treadwell, and Laviska Shenault Jr.
The Jaguars had a less-than-optimal wide receiver room in 2021. They lost DJ Chark Jr. to an ankle fracture in Week 4 and Jamal Agnew to a hip injury later in the season. This, along with other factors, played a role in Jacksonville finishing last in the league in points scored.
The Jaguars made sure Trevor Lawrence has plenty of weapons at his disposal and it looks like he’s already making good use of all of them. Expect this to continue throughout the regular season.