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2015 OTAs: Four takeaways, Day Four

Posted Jun 1, 2015

Senior writer John Oehser’s four takeaways from Day Four of Jaguars 2015 Organized Team Activities …


JACKSONVILLE – Senior writer John Oehser’s four takeaways from Day Four of Jaguars 2015 Organized Team Activities …

1.Colvin working outside and in. We begin Day Four of Jaguars OTAs Takeaways with second-year cornerback Aaron Colvin, who continues to have the look of a player who could be key to the defense. Colvin, who opened the offseason as the starting nickel corner, has continued in that role, but Head Coach Gus Bradley and defensive backs coach DeWayne Walker each said Colvin also worked with the starters on the outside Monday. “We want to make sure we put our players in a position to be successful, so we’re going to make sure we try guys wherever we need to,” defensive coordinator Bob Babich said. Bradley said he has spoken with Colvin about the mindset needed to play inside and outside. “It’s a guy like (former Tampa Bay Buccaneers cornerback) Ronde Barber,” Bradley said. “He played outside first and second down and on third down he moved inside or based on the personnel groupings, and that’s kind of the challenge that he had to go through,” Bradley said. “It takes a mindset to do that. It’s a challenge, but if you can have a corner play outside and then come in and move inside that’s a great quality.”

2.Better in the back. Four days into 2015 OTAs, Walker said he likes the overall play of the secondary. He spoke specifically on Monday of strong safety Johnathan Cyprien playing “a lot cleaner” this offseason. “Not that he (Cyprien) wasn’t mature, but he’s really starting to mature as a veteran player,” Walker said. “He has 30 games under his belt. He has seen a lot. You can tell by talking to him he’s starting to take the next step.” Of the secondary as a unit, Walker said, “We look like guys are playing fast. The guys who have been here going into Year Three I think understand some of the nuances after being together for a couple of years. The new guys – (cornerback Davon) House and (safety) Sergio (Brown) – I think they’re picking things up pretty good. We’re improved, for sure.”

3.A little bigger. Telvin Smith is a bit bigger this offseason, but said on Monday he doesn’t see that as a particularly big deal. Smith, the Jaguars’ starting weakside linebacker, said he is working in OTAs at a “solid” 220 pounds – up from last season, when his high was around 218. But while Smith’s size has been a story at times since being selected in the fifth round of the 2014 NFL Draft, he said he isn’t nearly as concerned about the issue as perhaps he was early in his rookie season. “I want to keep playing fast – that’s what it’s all about,” Smith said. “If I feel like it’s too much, I’ll drop weight and not worry about it, because I feel like I can play regardless of what my number is.” Smith added with a smile, “If I step on the field at 115, I’m going to play like I’m 240 – it is what it is. Toward the beginning of last season, I was worried about a lot of things, but toward the end of the season I said, ‘Telvin, you have to be you.’ That’s when I started playing looser. I wasn’t trying to think too much through it. The plays started to come through. I feel like if I keep doing that, the sky’s the limit. So, right now, I’m going to see if the weight can help. If it does, then OK, good, but it is what it is.”

4.Yeldon continues to impress. Like veterans such as tight end Julius Thomas and wide receiver Ace Sanders, running back T.J. Yeldon has impressed early in OTAs. The second-round selection from Alabama is expected to be the starter as a rookie, and he has shown versatility as a runner and receiver – as well as noteworthy quickness as a runner. “He looks really good in short-area change of direction,” Jaguars middle linebacker Paul Posluszny said. “He looks really, really good there. It’s, ‘How does a guy move in space? How athletic is he?’ That’s what stands out. With him, he definitely has it.”

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