Skip to main content

Jaguars News | Jacksonville Jaguars -

Assistant GM Ethan Waugh Feels Good About the Depth of the Jaguars Roster 

0514 Ethan Waugh Presser Article

JACKSONVILLE – Work has been done. Progress has been made.

And while the 2024 offseason isn't over, and while NFL player acquisition never really ends, Ethan Waugh overall said he sees the Jaguars' roster as improved in recent months.

That gives him a good sense as 2024 organized team activities approach.

"I feel a lot better," Waugh said of the roster recently.

Waugh, the Jaguars' assistant general manager, spoke to the media Friday shortly before Jaguars 2024 rookie camp. With the 2024 NFL Draft and much of free agency in the rearview, Waugh said he likes how the Jaguars combined those two acquisition opportunities to improve the team's size, strength and speed.

Head Coach Doug Pederson throughout the offseason has discussed adding "winners," saying shortly before the draft players such as free agent defensive tackle Arik Armstead – who played in the Super Bowl with the San Francisco 49ers last season – were added because they understood the need to "keep our foot on the gas and keep pushing" throughout the season.

"We need more guys like that," Pederson said.

Waugh on Friday said free agency moved toward that end.

"I feel like we added players through free agency that fit us in terms of their makeup," he said. "Obviously, their ability as well – but also their makeup in terms of coming from winning programs that have played in big games and big games late in the season. Having those guys here will help the rest of our team grow in that capacity."

Waugh, too, said the free-agency approach benefitted the team during the draft in late April.

The Jaguars in addition to Armstead signed unrestricted free agents such as wide receiver Gabe Davis (Buffalo Bills), center Mitch Morse (Bills), wide receiver/returner Devin Duvernay (Baltimore Ravens), cornerback Ronald Darby (Ravens), outside linebacker Trevis Gipson (Tennessee Titans), safety Darnell Savage Jr. (Green Bay Packers) and tight end Josiah Deguara (Packers).

They also traded for backup quarterback Mac Jones (New England Patriots), then selected nine players in the 2024 NFL Draft – including wide receiver Brian Thomas Jr. (Round 1) and defensive lineman Maason Smith (Round 2).

"We were fortunate enough in free agency, we didn't pigeonhole ourselves in the draft in terms of having to take a specific position," Waugh said. "We were able to take the best player or the player that we thought could help our team the most rather than we have to have X position.

"That's really good and we feel good about the team. We feel there will be competition at almost every spot. That's probably in the eye of the beholder, but I think we have pretty good depth at most spots."


  • Pederson on Friday said the team is working to prepare for new kickoff rules implemented by the NFL this offseason. Under the rules, most members of the kickoff coverage team will line up around the receiving team's 40-yard line and most members of the receiving team (except returners) will line up around the receiving team's 35-yard line. The idea is to increase returns while also making returns safer. The Jaguars focused on special teams in the draft, selecting running back/returner Keilan Robinson and kicker Cam Little in part because their skills could be positives on kickoffs and returns. Pederson said the team has worked on kickoffs throughout the offseason, and will continue to do so when Phase 3 of the offseason program – organized team activities – begin at the Miller Electric Center Monday. "We've started from Phase One with our special teams, introducing the new scheme, the layout," Pederson said. "We've worked it. Even though we can't compete against each other in Phase Two, we're still working through the alignments and assignments. When we get to Phase Three when we can kind of go against each other a little bit more, it will give us a bigger or a brighter picture as to how it's going to unfold for us." Waugh said personnel officials met with special teams coaches often to project the impact of the new rules. "You know … what do we think is going to happen, what are the schemes you guys are looking at using, what do you think we're going to see and just trying to figure that out," Waugh said. "The big thing is you're going to need a second returner and – in our eyes – a second returner with speed. That way they can't just kick the ball away from us. If we put two guys out there that can run, that's going to make us pretty dangerous. We'll see what the kickoff team's answer to that is. It's all a little bit gray. The preseason will show a lot of how different teams look at it and how they plan to exploit it."

Week in and week out. The work continues at Miller Electric Center, check out some of the best shots from this week ➡️

Related Content