The Fantastic Four of Free Agency

The Jags have a new and improved team ready to take on the 2016 season. Let’s take the time to honor players who will be playing their first regular season game in a Jags uniform. What are their roles?

Malik Jackson (The Thing): It’s no secret, this is the man the Jags paid big money to in free agency. He will be a linchpin to stopping the run and being a team leader on defense. Jackson has played on the big stage before as he is a former Super Bowl champion, his experience and play style will bring this Jags defensive line to the next level. Especially since the Jags have two rookie edge rushers. If Jackson can collapse the pocket and pick up multiple blockers, the young defensive ends will have less pressure on them to get to the quarterback.

 

Tashaun Gipson  (Mr. Fantastic): The ball hawk from Cleveland is here in Jacksonville. He will be asked to do a lot at the free safety position. The Jags are shallow in terms of depth behind Gipson so not only do they need him to perform, his absence would leave a major void in the secondary. The former pro bowler is up to the challenge; he is still only 26 years old and is heading into his fifth season. The addition of Gipson will allow the Jags to play more aggressive up front, as he stays in the back like a true free safety. Though Malik Jackson is the higher value free agent in terms of money, Gipson fills a much larger hole in the Jags defense.

 

Chris Ivory (Human Torch): Gus Bradley has been consistent this offseason on the Jags improving their run game. Ivory brings the down hill power running game the Jags have wanted for so long. Though T.J. Yeldon is by no means a small running back at 6’1 225 lbs, he has struggled in short yardage situations and got banged up last year with the heavy workload. Ivory is a power runner, nothing flashy. No jukes or spin moves, just one cut and run. He has great pad level, and can wear down defenses over time. He is the key if the Jags want to beat the Packers on Sunday. The more he can carry the ball, the less it will be in Aaron Rodgers' hands. He will light the fuse to the Jags run game.

 

Kelvin Beachum (Invisible WoMAN): The former Steeler is the new left tackle for the Jags. He is coming off a serious ACL injury and did not get a lot of work in the preseason. The veteran was still handed the job in place of Luke Joeckel. He will be in charge of protecting Blake Bortles and the anchor of this Jags offensive line. Beachum is no stranger to success, as he protected Big Ben Roethlisberger for a long time in Pittsburgh, but coming off such an injury and starting week one against Green Bay raises a lot of questions. Beachum just needs to stay off the radar. As the left tackle, if we don’t hear much about him during the season, most likely he is doing his job protecting Bortles.

null

Jags Illustrated Top Stories