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First off the Field: Opportunity for Myers


JACKSONVILLE – The new kicker had a lot to say about the old one.

Jason Myers, the Jaguars' new kicker, on Tuesday spoke to the media for the first time since the team traded longtime kicker Josh Scobee to the Pittsburgh Steelers Monday.

Myers on Tuesday spoke about his new opportunity and what goes with it. Notably, too, he talked about Scobee, the Jaguars' kicker for the past 11 seasons and one of the most popular players in franchise history.

"Josh has been great the whole time," Myers said after the Jaguars continued preparations for the preseason finale at Washington Thursday with a short, one-hour practice at the Florida Blue Health and Wellness practice fields.

"He was one of the first guys who called me. Coming in, him being such a long-term vet, I didn't expect anything from him. But he was helpful from Day One."

Jaguars Head Coach Gus Bradley said Myers has impressed mentally and physically since signing with the team early in the offseason.

"I like his demeanor and his poise," Bradley said. "Like every kicker, there are going to be times where they miss one or two or whatever the case may be. But we feel strongly about his demeanor and his consistency."

Bradley added with a laugh, "I will say this: when he kicked one in practice (Monday), there were more eyes watching him on the team."

Did he make it?

"He did," Bradley said, smiling.

Bradley said the Jaguars would feel confident in Myers from 60 yards in, and that the team also liked Myers' ability to get the ball up quickly and his heights on his kicks. That was an area the team addressed with Scobee early last season.

"All those things are advantageous," Bradley said. "I will give Josh credit. He got it corrected, but it's more evident to us when we see a kicker who has those traits how much we appreciate it."

Myers said he'll remember Scobee's sincerity when they spoke following the trade.

"It means a lot he actually cares," Myers said. "You could tell when he was talking it was from his heart. That means a lot. It was competition, but we both wanted each other to do their best."

Myers, who played collegiately at Marist, signed with the Jaguars on March 3 after being scouted at former NFL kicker Michael Husted's kicking camp in Mobile, Ala., shortly before the Senior Bowl in January. 

Myers, who spent time with Arizona and San Jose of the Arena League in 2014, has worked extensively over the last year with Husted, who works out of Myers' hometown of San Diego, Cal.

"Husted's really helped me," Myers said. "A lot of NFL guys come in who are with teams right now. Being able to kick with them every day, seeing how their ball flies, and working those guys has really helped me."

Myers impressed throughout the offseason and training camp. He made four of his five field-goal attempts in three preseason games, converting from 38, 49 and 55 yards against the New York Giants in Preseason Week 2 and from 35 yards against Detroit this past weekend.

"Obviously, I'm excited," Myers said. "It's not all the time you get an opportunity like this, so when it came about, I was happy."

With Tuesday's practice being a walkthrough, the Jaguars did not announce injuries following the hour workout. The following players missed practice Monday:

Leo defensive end Andre Branch (knee), guard Brandon Linder (toe), wide receiver Marqise Lee (hamstring), wide receiver Allen Hurns (hip), running back Toby Gerhart (abdomen), linebacker LaRoy Reynolds (knee), cornerback Peyton Thompson (hamstring) and defensive tackle Roy Miller (veterans day off).

Cornerback Demetrius McCray (knee), running back Bernard Pierce (back) and Neal Sterling (hamstring) worked limited Tuesday, as did safety Matt Daniels (shoulder), cornerback Davon House and wide receiver Bryan Walters (hamstring).

Tight end Julius Thomas (hand) and safety Johnathan Cyprien (finger) have worked in red, non-contact jerseys since the preseason opener. Jaguars General Manager David Caldwell on Monday confirmed that Thomas could need surgery on the area, with that surgery potentially pushing his return back "a couple of weeks" into the regular season. Thomas was scheduled to get a second opinion Tuesday.

"It's unfortunate," Bradley said Tuesday. "It's something that's come up. I do feel fortunate that the offense without Julius moved the ball and did some really good things. That's a positive. We'll only be stronger when he gets back."

Also open Tuesday, Bradley declined to specify playing time for front-line players against the Redskins, but indicated that starters likely would play sparingly if at all.

Asked specifically about rookie running back T.J. Yeldon, for example, he said, "if any, it would be limited." Bradley also said defensive end Chris Clemons likely would not play.

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