Jim Steve-USA TODAY Sports

Jacksonville Jaguars Position Preview: Wide Receiver

While Allen Robinson and Allen Hurns are shaping up as a magnificent duo, the Jaguars possess depth and roster decisions at the wide receiver position.

Much has been written about the Jacksonville Jaguars' extraordinary receiving duo of Allen Robinson and Allen Hurns, but the team has more weapons at wideout who will fight for targets this season. With the Allens leading the way, the Jaguars will possess depth at the position that rivals the league's best.

If he isn't one already, Robinson is well on his way to being a top-five receiver. In just his second season, Robinson racked up 1,400 yards receiving, which placed him sixth in the NFL, right behind Odell Beckham Jr. The former Penn State star also scored 14 touchdowns, tying Brandon Marshall and Doug Baldwin for first.

At 6-foot-3, Robinson provides a large target for Blake Bortles and routinely catches jump balls over defenders. The third-year player is a constant threat for a big play, leading all receivers and tight ends in plays of 20 yards or more. With the ability to catch and run for a big gain or go over the top and win a ball over a corner, Robinson presents issues for defenses that few others can.

A bit of a surprise to some, Hurns has become a top-20 wide receiver in two years after going undrafted in 2014. Much like Robinson, the former Miami wideout came into his own last year, compiling just over 1,000 yards while hauling in 10 touchdowns, tying for tenth in the league with Antonio BrownA.J. Green and Ted Ginn Jr.

An ever-improving route runner, Hurns' 19 plays of 20 yards or more tied him for seventh with a slew of proven pass catchers, including Beckham and Marshall. The former Hurricane should continue his success as he builds a rapport with Bortles, whom he came into the league with along with Robinson. Fans can expect Hurns to reach similar stats as a year ago, potentially ranking in the top ten or 15 in most receiving categories.

Likely the No. 3 or 4 receiver, Marqise Lee will look to prove his worth in his third NFL season. A second-round pick by Jacksonville in 2014, Lee had a rather productive rookie campaign, seeing action in 13 games while totaling 37 catches and just over 400 yards. Hampered by a hamstring injury a year ago, Lee's production dipped, as he hauled in 15 catches for 191 yards.

Searching for consistency, Lee's growth begins with staying healthy, which he has struggled to do as of late. If he can avoid health issues, Lee should be able to produce in a situation that is ripe for success - he is behind two of the best receivers in the league and will likely benefit from the defensive focus shifting on Robinson and Hurns.

Healthy through OTAs, Lee has begun building a rapport with Bortles that could rollover into the season. If this is the case, look for Lee to become a solid third option at receiver, potentially rivaling tight end Julius Thomas for the third most production in the passing game.

Challenging Lee for that third spot, and maybe leading, is the second-year receiver from Florida StateRashad Greene. Greene received the majority of the work in the slot, a spot at which he can flourish this season.

Hindered by Achilles tendinitis his rookie year, Greene played in nine games but showed flashes when he was on the field. Although his 19 catches only produced 93 yards, the former Seminole scored two receiving touchdowns while showing his versatility in punt returns. 

Greene tallied 301 yards on 18 returns, his best effort coming in a December game against the Indianapolis Colts. Greene ran a punt back 73 yards for a touchdown en route to a 51-16 win. 

Much like Lee, Greene's health will determine how far he can go this season. Likely to be the No. 1 guy in the slot, Greene will have plenty of opportunity and open space on the field to make plays - that's the luxury of having two of the best receivers and one of the most reliable tight ends in the game.

Undrafted in 2010 out of Cornell, Bryan Walters struggled to find a home until he landed in Jacksonville. After stops in San DiegoMinnesota, and Seattle, Walters signed with the Jaguars in 2015 and played in 11 games last season. 

The journeyman compiled 368 yards on 32 catches, good for 4th and 5th on the team, respectively. Walters was used in a similar role as Greene, catching passes and returning punts as well, but without much success in the latter. With Greene being younger and progressing nicely, the 28-year-old could find playing time hard to come by even though he was serviceable a year ago.

But based on the production he provided, Walters may find himself as the fifth receiver on the roster with a chance to make a further impact with an injury.

Although he's transitioning to tight end, Neal Sterling could potentially serve at both positions as either a third or fourth tight end and a sixth wide out. At 6-foot-3 and 240 pounds, Sterling would be on the smaller side as a tight end but has the perfect frame for a reliable pass catcher with the ability to handle smaller safeties and corners.

Drafted by Jacksonville in the seventh round in 2015, Sterling appeared in nine games but did not accumulate any receiving stats. Sterling has the potential to make the roster on his size alone, along with his versatility to play inside at tight end or out wide as a receiver.

Sterling is likely to make the squad if the Jaguars decide to take on six wide receivers. If Jacksonville decides to carry five wide outs, then fans can probably expect Sterling to land on the practice squad. 

Drafted by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2010, Arrelious Benn has not taken a snap in the regular season since 2012. His first two years in the league were promising, compiling 395 and 441 receiving yards, respectively.

But since 2012, Benn has been unable to gain traction with any team. After 2012, the former Illinois standout spent time with the Philadelphia Eagles but never saw the field. With a core of young wide receivers from top to bottom, the Jaguars will likely not need Benn's services this year, and he will be on the outside looking in. 

For the meantime, Benn can provide a veteran presence for the younger players in Lee, Greene and Sterling.


Jaguars Forever Top Stories