Jaguars Add New Tight End
The Jaguars inked former Dolphins tight end Joey Haynos yesterday to bolster their offense. Haynos was drafted by Green Bay in the third round in 2008 and spent two seasons with Miami. The 6-foot-8 inch, 264 pounder from Maryland is better known for his blocking as he caught just 21 passes in his two seasons as a Dolphin.
"Down in Miami I developed my blocking a lot," Haynos told reporters. "I think I can catch the ball when thrown to and get down field pretty good."
The addition of Haynos signals that the Jaguars are less than comfortable with their offensive line and he will have an opportunity to make the team as a fourth or fifth tight end. Expect to see the Jaguars with a lot of two tight end sets when the regular season begins.
Could Mincey Be the Guy?
The Jaguars have been in desperate need of a pass rush seemingly since the Tony Brackens era. With Aaron Kampman expected to see limited snaps and the younger group of defensive ends showing little progress, the Jaguars may struggle to find a pass rush.
"I've tried all offseason to get my mind around that and I think it depends on how the game is going," Kampman said when asked about a reduced role. "It's more probably a pride issue for myself because I've always loved to be on the field."
Veteran Jeremy Mincey has been rarely mentioned in the Jaguars plans at defensive end but the sixth-year veteran from Florida has been the team's most consistent performer at the position. Mincey carried over an excellent showing at practice Wednesday night to a strong game on Friday as he terrorized Falcons tackle Sam Baker.
"I was watching film on Baker and I developed some moves that he's struggled with," Mincey said.
Mincey has been cut by the Jaguars a total of four times since being drafted in 2006 by New England. At the beginning of camp Mincey was considered a long-shot to make the Jaguars roster and at this point he looks like a lock to be a starter as he's getting better with every day and game.
"I'm just focusing on what I'm good at, speed rush and I'm trying to get better at what I do," Mincey said following Friday's game.
Where's the Separation?
Many around the nation have questioned the ability of the Jaguars wide receivers and the first two preseason games will not make those questions disappear. After a four-drop performance against New England, the Jaguars pass catchers dropped another three very catchable balls against Atlanta.
The Jaguars wide receiving corps improved slightly with the presence of rookie Cecil Shorts, but if the team is going to depend on a rookie from Division III Mount Union to be an explosive unit, they could be in trouble. Still, Shorts remains very confident in his abilities.
"Everybody's good, if you are out on the field playing that means you are talented," Shorts told reporters following his five-catch, 52-yard performance.
The reality that Shorts may have to lead this team's receivers looks more and more possible, as Cecil has played well ever since his first day of camp and the other receivers have been mediocre. Veteran Mike Thomas, the team's returning star from last season has struggled mightily to get separation and Jason Hill is still a relative unknown after just five touchdown catches in four seasons.
"We don't listen to what everyone says," Jason Hill said. "I'm just trying to go out there and perform."
If Jacksonville is going to improve on the 27th ranked passing attack in the league from a year ago, they will need several guys to step up and perform. Charlie Bernstein is the NFL Insider for ESPN 1080 and 1040 in Orlando/Tampa and 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
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