3 players who can step into a bigger role for the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2024

• The Jaguars need to bolster the roster in 2024

• They also need to lean on this trio of players more

Oct 1, 2023; London, United Kingdom;  Jacksonville Jaguars offensive tackle Walker Little (72)
Oct 1, 2023; London, United Kingdom; Jacksonville Jaguars offensive tackle Walker Little (72) / Peter van den Berg-USA TODAY Sports
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2. Antonio Johnson, safety/nickel

During his end-of-the-season conference, general manager Trent Baalke told the media that the team will look different in 2024. He didn't go into details but it's no hyperbole to say that the Jaguars must make changes to several position groups, including but not limited to the offensive line, the defensive line, and the secondary.

One position, in particular, that could undergo a makeover in the offseason is safety. While veteran Rayshawn Jenkins remains under contract for one more year, he could be a cap casualty, especially if the team wants to be active in free agency. Similarly, they may need to add depth if Daniel Thomas leaves in free agency.

Thomas has barely gotten playing time on defense, so Jacksonville may feel comfortable moving on from him. That said, parting ways with Jenkins and Thomas would leave the safety room somewhat depleted. One way to lessen any potential losses is to move Antonio Johnson back, a fifth-round pick in last year's draft, to his original position.

Even though a hamstring injury prevented Johnson from making an impact early on, he progressively saw playing time at nickel increase. By the end of the season, he had effectively supplanted Tre Herndon in the slot. But as good as he was, the former Texas A&M Aggie has the versatility to line up at safety, giving the Jaguars ample flexibility.

Johnson finished the year with two interceptions, one sack, one forced fumble, and three passes defensed. While he could be an adequate replacement for Herndon in the slot, it wouldn't be shocking to see the coaching staff have him play safety in 2024.

Regardless of the position, the Jaguars must make sure Johnson gets as much playing time as possible moving forward.