4 Jaguars players who aren't safe with Ryan Nielsen as the defensive coordinator

• The Jaguars brougth in Ryan Nielsen to fix their defense

• A handful of players should benefit from his presence

• Others could see themselves affected by the defensive coordinator

Aug 12, 2023; Arlington, Texas, USA;  Jacksonville Jaguars linebacker Yasir Abdullah (56) on the
Aug 12, 2023; Arlington, Texas, USA; Jacksonville Jaguars linebacker Yasir Abdullah (56) on the / Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports
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1. Gregory Junior, cornerback

After an uneventful rookie campaign, cornerback Gregory Junior was a stud in last year's training camp. He was one of the players who showed the most improvement since the end of 2022, with head coach Doug Pederson publicly recognizing his growth. However, Junior didn't do much of note once the 2023 season began.

At 6'0", the Ouachita Baptist product is better suited to line up in the slot but couldn't get much playing time behind veteran Tre Herndon in 2023. To add insult to injury, Herndon eventually saw his playing time decrease but that's because he paved the way for defensive back Antonio Johnson. Junior ultimately suited up for nine games and played 93 defensive snaps while Johnson became into a steady contributor in the secondary.

Herndon is slated to hit the open market. That bodes well for Junior, who will probably be given a chance to compete for the nickel job. Then again, it's not a sure thing that Herndon will leave. Also, the Jaguars may also consider bringing in competition, so Junior is not a lock to man in the slot next season even if the Jaguars move Johnson to safety, his natural position.

Working in Junior's favor is that most players will get a clean slate under Ryan Nielsen, who will push everyone out of their comfort zone. His system is known for being aggressive and attacking. Perhaps Junior will thrive under him but there's also an equal chance he'll be unable to move up the depth chart.

As Trent Baalke told the media in his end-of-the-season conference, iron sharpens iron and it will be interesting to see who benefits from Nielsen's arrival and who falters. One thing is certain though, everyone will get a chance to prove himself.

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