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Campservations: Minicamp, Day 1

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JACKSONVILLE – Jaguars 2023 Rookie Minicamp began Friday.

The Jaguars' second rookie minicamp under Head Coach Doug Pederson is being held inside TIAA Bank Field. Here are Friday's "campservations" from three Jaguars Media members – senior writer John Oehser, senior correspondent Brian Sexton and senior reporter/editor J.P. Shadrick:

John Oehser, Jaguars Senior Writer…

  • The first thing a general manager or scout wants from a rookie minicamp is to not leave the first practice wondering if your early-drafted players belong in the NFL. This wasn't remotely a concern Friday, with the Jaguars' top three draft selections easily among the most impressive of the 49 players at 2023 Jaguars Rookie Minicamp. Offensive tackle Anton Harrison, the No. 27 overall selection in the late April 2023 NFL Draft, showed impressive power in an early blocking drill – a drill in which Round 7 guard Conner Hodges also showed good power. Tight end Brenton Strange, the No. 61 overall selection, stood out physically and looked the part of an early draft selection in multiple drills. In this vein, too, was running back and No. 88 overall selection Tank Bigsby – whose power and quickness was evident in the non-padded, non-contact work. The teaching nature of the practices make in-depth observations difficult, but one play that stood out late was a long reception by wide receiver Kevin Austin Jr. on a deep pass down the sideline from quarterback Nathan Rourke. Austin spent last season on the Jaguars' practice squad and Rourke threw 25 touchdown passes with the British Columbia Lions of the Canadian Football League in 2022.

Brian Sexton, Jaguars Senior Correspondent…

  • The Big Three certainly looked the part. Harrison, Strange and Bigsby all arrived with the physical credentials to play NFL football. Harrison in particular showed really nice feet and powerful hands hitting the bags. For what it's worth, he also seemed at ease moving to his right instead of the left he was accustomed to at Oklahoma. Strange looked bigger than his height and weight would suggest and made a nice adjustment to an off-target throw down the seam, which would seem to be just what Head Coach Doug Pederson wants. Bigsby is a high-cut, high-knees runner who looked natural running inside during team work. If those three guys are legit, this is a really good draft class.

J.P. Shadrick, Jaguars Senior Reporter/Editor…

  • Though it is tough to judge without pads and working in essentially non-contact drills, Harrison looks the part. He's big and agile, and worked at right tackle throughout his first rookie minicamp practice. Fifth-round pick safety Antonio Johnson also looks the part; he stands out at 6-feet-2 and 198 pounds. Let's see him let loose when the pads come on. Fifth-round pick outside linebacker Yasir Abdullah has a broader upper body than I thought. The standout for me on Day One, though, was Strange. He made a few catches in team work, and after turning up-field with a head of steam, he looked like he could be a problem to bring down. It's one rookie minicamp practice, but it was good to be back on a practice field again and watching football things happening.

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