JACKSONVILLE – Donte Moncrief likes his new situation.
That was evident during an appearance on Jaguars.com Live Wednesday, when the veteran wide receiver said he feels the same motivation he felt when signing with the Jaguars this past March as an unrestricted free agent.
“I have a lot to prove,” Moncrief told jaguars.com Wednesday, adding: “It’s a new team, new season, new home. I’m here to win. I’m here to help and do whatever I’ve got to do to help this team win and give it an extra spark…”
Moncrief (6-feet-2, 220 pounds), a fifth-year veteran, spent his first four seasons with the Indianapolis Colts – like the Jaguars, a member of the AFC South. Moncrief said he gets the same sense from his new teammates that he got from playing against Jacksonville last season when the Jaguars were on their way to their first AFC South title and their first AFC Championship Game appearance since 1999.
Jaguars players talked often last season of not feeling as if observers believed in them, and Moncrief said his impression is his teammates still feel the same way.
“There’s a lot of energy in the locker room,” Moncrief said. “Watching those guys last year, you could tell they were focused and they had a goal. Now, coming out here with these guys, you can still see they’re angry and they have a lot to prove.
“They still feel like people are doubting them. There’s a lot of hard work going on.”
Moncrief, originally a third-round selection in the 2014 NFL Draft, caught 152 passes for 1,875 yards and 18 touchdowns in four seasons, with his best season coming in 2015 when he caught 64 passes for 733 yards and six touchdowns. He also caught seven touchdowns in 2016, but missed 11 games over the past two seasons after missing none in 2014 and 2015.
“I’m focused on staying healthy, learning this playbook and gaining the trust of the quarterbacks and coaches to show what I can do,” he said.
Moncrief upon signing with the Jaguars joined a young corps of receivers that includes just one receiver with his experience – fifth-year veteran Marqise Lee. The group also includes second-year veterans Keelan Cole and Dede Westbrook and rookie second-round selection DJ Chark.
“I’ve got a lot of young guys in my room – Dede Westbrook, Cole …” he said. “All of those guys are hard workers. You have to work hard also.”
Also on Wednesday:
*Jaguars middle linebacker Myles Jack made a surprise appearance on Wednesday’s Jaguars.com Live, saying of the Jaguars’ offseason to date: “I’ve just been taking it day-by-day honestly. We’re going through installs right now, so every night I take a bath and I’m on my IPad going through plays and trying to get it second nature – just like I saw Poz (recently retired middle linebacker Paul Posluszny) do it. That way when we get into camp it’s natural and we can get on to bigger and better things.”