JACKSONVILLE – They're leaders on and off the field.
They're the five players their teammates respect above all others, and the Jaguars' players on Monday made that status as official as possible.
Players voted on the captains, with Head Coach Doug Pederson announcing the five Monday.
"It's a special honor to become a captain," Pederson said Monday as the Jaguars began preparing to play the Washington Commanders in the 2022 regular-season opener at FedEx Field in Landover, Md., Sunday at 1 p.m.
Pederson, in his first season as the Jaguars' head coach, said he leaves the permanent captains entirely to player vote with no input from him. Lawrence and Scherff are the two offensive captains, with Oluokun and Allen the two defensive captains and Cooke the special-teams captain.
"This is representative of the guys in the locker room," Pederson said. "There's obviously a lot of responsibility that comes with that."
Lawrence, the No. 1 overall selection in the 2021 NFL Draft, is entering his second season as the Jaguars' starting quarterback. Scherff, an eighth-year veteran who signed with the Jaguars as an unrestricted free agent in March, played his first seven seasons with Washington and made five Pro Bowls in his first seven seasons.
"It feels great," Scherff said. "That was one of my goals, to do everything the right way. I'm trying to lead by example and for them to vote me as a captain is a tremendous honor for me. I don't take it lightly and I'll do everything I can for absolutely anybody in this building."
Allen, the No. 7 overall selection by the Jaguars in the 2019 NFL Draft, is entering his fourth season with the Jaguars and made the Pro Bowl following his 2019 rookie season. Oluokun, a fifth-year veteran who signed with the Jaguars as an unrestricted free agent in March, played his first four seasons with the Atlanta Falcons and led the NFL in tackles in 2021.
"It was a really cool experience, for the guys on the team to look up to me and have the confidence in me to lead them," Oluokun said. "I definitely play for my brothers around me. For them to say they trust me to lead them is the most respect. It's another thing I have to prove. They named me captain, let me prove that I'm a good captain. That's kind of where my head is now.
"I'm going to try to win as many games as possible as a captain, get guys in the right mindset, and prove that I belong as a captain."
Cooke, a seventh-round selection by the Jaguars in the 2018 NFL Draft, has averaged 46.5 yards per punt in four seasons.
Pederson said in addition to the five "permanent" captains he will name a sixth captain for each game at his discretion.
"I rotate that every week," he said.