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Breaking down the positions



Starter: David Garrard. Reserves: Blaine Gabbert, Luke McCown.

Comment:Obviously the most-discussed/debated position of camp. Garrard will start, and while Gabbert is listed as the No. 2, McCown could be the first off the bench behind Garrard. Gabbert, the No. 10 overall selection in the 2011 NFL Draft, is the clear quarterback of the future, but may not quite be ready to quarterback a contending team. Had there been a full off-season instead of a lockout, it's possible that could have been different. Still, if he's not quite ready to start, then he's not quite ready to be the backup over the experienced McCown, either.

Running backs

Maurice Jones-Drew. Reserves: Deji Karim, Montell Owens.

Comment:Jones-Drew played just a couple of preseason series, and a season-ending knee injury to Rashad Jennings moved Karim into a backup role. Karim had an outstanding preseason, and with Jennings out, look for the fullbacks – including Owens – to play a larger role in the offense.


Greg Jones. Reserves: Brock Bolen.

Comment: Including Owens, that makes three fullbacks on the roster. Few teams around the NFL keep three fullbacks. Few have three this good.

Wide receivers

Mike Thomas, Jason Hill. Reserves: Cecil Shorts, Jarett Dillard, Kassim Osgood, Jamar Newsome.

Comment: Mike Thomas is the most dependable player in this group, and the Jaguars entered preseason waiting for another player from this group to step up. They're still waiting, but liked enough of what they saw from Newsome – a free-agent rookie – to keep him on the roster. Shorts impressed in camp and is likely the No. 3 receiver, but could push soon for a starting role.

Tight ends

Marcedes Lewis. Reserves: Zach Miller, Zach Potter.

Comment:No surprises in this bunch. Lewis is one of the league's best, and Miller missed the last two preseason games with a knee injury.

Offensive tackles

Eugene Monroe, Eben Britton. Reserves: Cameron Bradfield, Guy Whimper.

Comment:Monroe has been the object of a lot of preseason criticism, and Britton's status for the opener is uncertain. Whimper started in place of Britton in the preseason, and Bradfield impressed coaches and personnel officials throughout the preseason.

Offensive guards

Will Rackley, Uche Nwaneri. Reserve: Jason Spitz (G/C).

Comment:Rackley is starting after being selected in the third round of the 2011 NFL Draft, and Spitz is backing up both positions as well as center.


Brad Meester. Reserve: John Estes.

Comment:Meester has been a solid, veteran presence throughout training camp and preseason, with Estes shaping up to be possibly the team's center of the future. Spitz also took snaps at center in the preseason.

Defensive ends

Aaron Kampman, Jeremy Mincey. Reserves: Matt Roth, Austen Lane

Comment:Kampman won't play the same percentage of snaps he did before his injury last season, but he's still a full-time starter and the key to this position group. Mincey and Roth seem very close, and the reality of the end position is it may not matter much who starts and who doesn't. This is going to be a heavy-rotation position, and production – i.e., pressures and sacks – will be expected whoever is playing.

Defensive tackles

Tyson Alualu, Terrance Knighton. Reserves: Leger Douzable, C.J.  Mosley, Nate Collins.

Comment:There may not be a better young tackle tandem in the NFL than Alualu and Knighton. When they're 100 percent, they form a disruptive force capable of shutting down pretty much any opposing rushing game. Alualu also showed improved pass rush in two preseason games. Having to put D'Anthony Smith on injured reserve hurt the depth here a bit, but Collins impressed late in the preseason and this overall is a strong area.


Clint Session, Paul Posluszny, Daryl Smith. Reserves: Russell Allen, Kyle Bosworth

Comment:The Jaguars surprised some by keeping just five at this position, but they kept Jacob Cutrera on the practice squad and likely would call him up if needed. The starters here are a distinct improvement from last season and overall, this is a solid group.


Starters: Dawan Landry, Courtney Greene. Reserves: Dwight Lowery, Chris Prosinski, Rod Issac.

Comment:How much did the Jaguars focus on this area in the off-season? Of this group, only Greene was on the roster last season. Prosinski missed the first two games of the preseason and played extensively in the last two. He looks like a player who could work his way into the lineup. The Jaguars traded with the Jets for Dwight Lowery on cut day. Issac can play corner and safety.


Derek Cox, Rashean Mathis. Nickel: Drew Coleman. Reserves: William Middleton, Kevin Rutland.

Comment:Cox and Mathis are pretty well-entrenched as starters, as Coleman is at the nickel. Rutland made the team as an undrafted rookie.

Special teams

Kicker: Josh Scobee. Punter: Matt Turk. Long snapper:  Jeremy Cain.

Comment:The Jaguars look solid here. Not surprising. They usually do. 

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