Several players have had a key role in the Jacksonville Jaguars’ 2-1 record in the 2022 season. One that gets overlooked because of the position he plays is right tackle Jawaan Taylor, who’s having a career year after struggling in prior seasons. Taylor recently met with the local media and shared the reason behind his improvement, which wasn’t the training camp battle with Walker Little.
"Everybody thinks the competition was, the competition definitely helped, Taylor said. “But also my dad passed in January, so I’ve just been trying to dedicate the season for my dad. Just go out there, just trying to get better every week and help my team win games."
A second-round pick in the 2019 NFL Draft, Taylor had made 49 consecutive starts before this season but had also struggled with penalties, so he had to compete with Little during the summer to keep his job.
Taylor missed time during the preseason with a hamstring injury but still managed to get on the top. He’s been able to continue his streak of consecutive starts alive but has also played the best football of his career.
So far, the former Florida Gator has played 119 pass-blocking snaps and has allowed just one total pressure and no sacks. Moreover, he hasn’t been flagged once and has posted a Pro Football Focus pass-blocking grade of 80.3, the best of his career by a wide margin. Here’s Taylor’s whole exchange with the media, it starts at the 22:44 mark.
The Jaguars’ patience for Jawaan Taylor has paid off
Players’ readiness is always variable coming out of college. Some can make an impact right off the bat. Others need more time to develop. Also, it’s important to take into account that several are still finding their way and figuring things out on the fly.
Losing a family member can have an impact, for better or worse and it sometimes can be a kind of wake-up alert. In Taylor’s case, it became a reason to improve on the football field and most likely in other facets of his life. That’s something worth recognizing.
The Jaguars’ offensive line has done a good job of giving Trevor Lawrence a clean pocket over the last two games. Similarly, they’ve opened big holes in the running game and have helped James Robinson and Travis Etienne thrive. Jawaan Taylor deserves credit for it and his dad would surely be proud.