Best Linebacking Corps Yet?
Displeased with the play of their linebackers last season, Jaguars management made it a point to get better in the offseason. Looking for more immediate results, the team decided to forgo drafting a linebacker and addressing the need via free agency.
Yesterday the Jaguars came to terms with former Buffalo Bills linebacker Paul Posluszny, who will play in the middle, and today they came to an agreement with now former Indianapolis Colts linebacker Clint Session, who will play on the weak side.
The linebacking trio of Daryl Smith, Posluszny and Session are the best the team has had in quite a while and a team source said that they could be "the best in franchise history."
Gain Two, Lose Two
Whereas many Jaguars fans are ecstatic about the new linebackers the team did have to say goodbye to a pair of Jaguars from the 2007 draft. Linebacker Justin Durant agreed to a deal with the Detroit Lions and punter Adam Podlesh, coming off his best year agreed to terms with Chicago.
The Durant departure was certainly expected as the Jaguars made virtually no effort to retain the four-year pro, but Podlesh was a different story. Most thought that the Jaguars would find a way to come to a deal with the former Maryland Terrapin and when Jack Del Rio was asked about the loss, he refused to comment.
"We're not going to talk on speculative," Del Rio said when asked about Podlesh's exile. "It is fluid right now."
Three Rookies In the Fold
60 percent of the Jaguars drafted rookie class are inked to deals as Rod Issac, Cecil Shorts and Chris Prosinski are all at the facilities and ready to practice.
"I didn't want to miss anything," wide receiver Cecil Shorts said when asked about getting in on time. "There were some difficulties but I'm here now and ready to go."
As for first-round pick Blaine Gabbert and third-round pick Will Rackley being on the field for this evening's practice, head coach Jack Del Rio said, "I'm hopeful."
Linemen Unavailable For Work
The Jaguars suited up this morning without the services of Vince Manuwai, Justin Smiley and Terrance Knighton. Smiley has the best excuse of all, as he was released.
"We just elected to allow him an opportunity to catch on and be somewhere else," Del Rio said of Smiley's release. "We drafted a guard obviously that we think will have a chance to develop and we elected to move and let Justin, a good young man, allow him a chance to catch on somewhere else."
As for Manuwai, the nine-year veteran showed up at approximately 340 pounds and was extremely out of shape.
"Vinny's not even close, I mean he's not even close to being ready," Del Rio explained.
"He's just in no position to be competing on the football field," the Jaguars head coach reiterated. He hasn't passed the physical and he's in poor condition."
Del Rio cited some personal reasons that may have been cause for the lack of conditioning, but personal reasons or not, Vince Manuwai is in a tough position with the Jaguars drafting guard Will Rackley.
Standout defensive tackle Terrance Knighton, who has struggled with some weight issues in the past was not available either.
"Terrance Knighton will condition on the side until we feel he's ready to participate; he's not ready right now. For his sake, for his safety and for other players we just feel like we have to hold him out right now, so he will not participate right now until he gets himself into a place where we feel that's acceptable to come on the field," Del Rio stated.
Charlie Bernstein is the host of "The Sports Crunch" on the Aquarius 7 Broadcasting Network (national), and Editor-in-Chief of Sports Media Interactive, covering multiple teams in the National Football League, NCAA, and National Basketball Association. Charlie covers the Jacksonville Jaguars for FoxSports and has been featured on the NFL Network and Sirius NFL Radio. Charlie is also a member of the Pro Football Writers of America. You can follow Charlie on Twitter @nflcharlie