The Jacksonville Jaguars acquired Evan Engram in free agency to bolster their tight end room but head coach Doug Pederson likes the overall talent the team has at the position.
Pederson told the local media before Tuesday’s practice that he likes the mix the Jaguars have at tight end and noted that the group brings different things to the table.
"Mix of kind of youth and some old guys in there. You take Dan [Arnold] and Evan [Engram] to more athletic route-runner type tight ends that could possibly create a matchup here and there, mixed with Chris [Manhertz] and his ability to block and Luke’s dog the same thing, it’s a good room."
A first-round pick in 2017, Engram signed a one-year deal in the offseason. He joined a room that included Dan Arnold, Chris Manhertz, and sophomore Luke Farrell. With the exception of Ferrell, all the Jaguars’ tight ends are set to become free agents after the 2022 season.
The Jaguars have a solid tight end duo in Dan Arnold and Evan Engram
The Jaguars got minimal production from the tight end position last year. Only Chris Manhertz and Jacob Hollister (now with the Las Vegas Raiders) scored touchdowns and the group combined for 68 catches and 679 receiving yards. Pederson has a history of getting his tight ends involved in his offense, so Engram and Arnold might get a big workload in 2022.
Engram had a few drops early in training camp but once he grew more comfortable, he showed the kind of impact he can have for Jacksonville. Against the Cleveland Browns, he had a nine-yard touchdown reception. He will be a big part of the offense but he won’t be the only tight end that will get significant playing time.
Arnold is coming off an MCL injury but he became one of Trevor Lawrence’s favorite targets after joining the team days before Week 4 of the 2021 season. From Weeks 5 to 9, he hauled in 25 receptions on 38 for 286 yards. Having spent the whole offseason with the Jags should help him develop even better chemistry with Lawrence and his teammates.
Tight end is far from a strength for the Jaguars in 2022 but it isn’t a weakness either. There are some pieces in place and Doug Pederson should be able to get the most out of them.