No. 3 Jaguars starter who could be benched in 2022: Tyler Shatley, IOL
Offensive lineman Tyler Shatley has been the epitome of dependability since joining the Jaguars in 2014. Although he’s spent most of his stint in a reserve role, he’s been reliable when called upon. Over the last last two seasons, he’s made 18 starts, some of them at guard but most of them at center in relief of Brandon Linder.
Scheduled to hit the open market earlier this year, the Jags gave Shatley a two-year deal before the start of free agency, knowing that there was a chance Linder would no longer be with the team in 2022. Linder ended up hanging up his cleats, which left Linder as the starter. The fact that he developed a good rapport with Trevor Lawrence last year, first in training camp and later in the regular season, should help him perform well.
Then again, there’s a chance Shatley might eventually lose his job to Luke Fortner, the 65th overall selection in this year’s draft. The team’s brass most likely took Fortner with the intention of developing him, so they can eventually plug him into the starting lineup.
Shatley should have the edge by virtue of being the veteran but if he underperforms or gets injured, the coaching staff won’t hesitate to go with Fortner and see how he fares. On the other hand, there’s a scenario in which Shatley holds his own and is able to keep the rookie on the sidelines the whole 2022 season.