Linebacker Myles Jack was a mainstay of the Jacksonville Jaguars’ defense since being selected in the second round of the 2016 NFL Draft. However, the team’s brass didn’t see him as a part of their long-term future and decided to part ways with him earlier this year. The former UCLA Bruin wasn’t long without a job though, as he quickly signed with the Pittsburgh Steelers. So far, he’s liking everything about the change of scenery.
Jack recently talked to reporters and discussed the changes between the Jags and Pittsburgh. He notes that he didn’t previously have a frame of reference since he had just suited up for just one team but coming to the Steelers is “a new culture, a new everything but it’s better for me“. The veteran linebacker says he enjoys going to work every day and when asked what stood out to him the most about Pittsburgh, he said their culture.
"It’s the culture. And that’s what people always say, but come from where I came from coming here, you see why this thing was successful. The mission is clear. There’s no secrets. If there’s a problem, it gets addressed, right then and there. And I feel like that’s the only way everybody’s held accountable. So I’ve enjoyed it. It’s been great."
Players will always gravitate toward a team that will put them in a position to succeed, so it’s hard not to agree with Jack and his reasons for joining the Steelers. He’s right when he says that problems must be addressed at the moment, so it’s fair to guess that he implied that didn’t happen often in Jacksonville. That part about not keeping secrets is also telling. It’s uncertain if he was solely talking about Urban Meyer or any other regime but it’s clear he doesn’t see the same issue taking place in Pittsburgh.
The Jaguars believe they’re better off without Myles Jack
Keep in mind that it was the Jaguars the ones that opted to cut ties with Jack and not the other way around, and the decision made sense. The linebacker was one of their best defensive players but he was also coming off a down year in which he led the team in tackles but most of them were made past the line of scrimmage. Similarly, he didn’t log a single big play.
Not only did the team’s brass release Jack but they also chose not to re-sign Damien Wilson. To take their place in the lineup, they signed Foyesade Oluokun in free agency and used a first-round pick in Utah’s Devin Lloyd in this year’s draft. Moreover, they selected Chad Muma in the third, so you could make the case that Jacksonville’s linebacker corps is in better shape than it was with Jack and Wilson.
Now, this isn’t a matter of who won or lost. It’s possible that both the Jaguars and Jack are better off without each other. Jack will now play under Steelers defensive coordinator Teryl Austin and head coach Mike Tomlin, one of the best in the business. On the other hand, Doug Pederson will continue the rebuild his predecessor left unfinished, so you could argue that both parties are in better situations.
Jack will be wearing a different uniform for the first time in his NFL career but that doesn’t mean his contributions in Jacksonville will be forgotten. It’s perfectly fine to root for him and see him try to get the success he didn’t have with the Jaguars after the 2017 season… unless he faces the Jags. If that’s the case, the gloves are off.