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Senior Bowl '16: Wash ready to dig in


MOBILE, Ala. – A few days in, Todd Wash is doing double duty.

For the Jaguars' new defensive coordinator, that means coordinating the South defense this week at the Senior Bowl while studying potential 2016 free agents.

It's next week when the coaching staff returns to EverBank Field that full study of last season – and planning for next season – begins. That's when Wash and the staff will truly dig into details. Wash, who took over as defensive coordinator last Friday, said that's what he's looking forward to the most this week.

He also reiterated something he said he truly believes.

"Like I've said, 'This package is not broken,'" Wash said Wednesday after the South team practiced in preparation for the Reese's 2016 Senior Bowl, which will be held at Ladd-Peebles Stadium Saturday. "We just have to tweak some things and be on the details of little tiny things for this thing to work.

"It's not complicated. But it has to seem complicated."

Wash, who emphasized attention to detail at his introductory press conference Friday, again emphasized that on Wednesday. He also emphasized the defense being "less predictable" moving forward.

"We play so many good quarterbacks that we can't just say, 'Here we are; this is what we're doing,''' Wash said. "We have to work on disguises. We have to make sure everything looks the same and play different things. It's those little tiny details that are so important for this package to work."

Wash said he and the staff will begin looking at cutups from last season Monday.

"We just have to clean some stuff up," Wash said. "We have to get in and say, 'The playbook says this: is this really what we want? Is this where our players are playing? Are we giving them the best chance?' We've got to go from the ground up, reteach the base foundation and start from there.

"I'm extremely excited about it. It's going to be a process. We understand that. At the same time, I can't wait to get back and get started."

Also around the Senior Bowl:

*When Jaguars general manager David Caldwell spoke to the media Tuesday, he talked about the need to focus on defense in this year's draft. "We felt like the first couple of years we just had to get a good core of players and really draft for need – which we had a lot of them – and try to find the best players available," Caldwell said of his early drafts with the team. "The last two years have been evident of that. Now, we can focus on, 'OK, what side of the ball we really want to build?' We feel good about the offense right now. We still have a ways to go there, and we're not done by any means offensively. But we're really focused on the defensive side of the ball. Getting [Leo end] Dante Fowler Jr. [back] is going to help us and getting Sen'Derrick Marks back is going to help us. Then we have some cap space and some good draft picks to fix the rest of the needs." …

*Caldwell also said the Jaguars absolutely need pass-rush help next season aside from Fowler. "If you've seen any team with a really good defensive end, they're even better when they have somebody on the opposite side of them," Caldwell said. "You need two of them. When you only have one, the production isn't going to be as high as it could be, because they're going to draw a lot of attention. People are going to slide pass protection to him, chip him, double-team him … they'll find a way to negate him …"

*Caldwell said this about the importance of the pass rush: "There were a handful of games we were winning in the fourth quarter. If we had significant pass rush, we could have closed some of those games out – or at least half of them. If we closed half of them out, we'd have been playing in January. … You can never have enough pass rushers. We have a need there. Whether it's two more, three more, whatever it might be. The saying is, 'You can never have enough pass rushers or corners. It's very true with pass rushers.''

*South players who have stood out at times this week include: Eastern Kentucky defensive end Noah Spence, Baylor wide receiver Jay Lee, Louisiana State cornerback Jalen Mills, Louisville defensive tackle Sheldon Rankins and Alabama defensive end Jarran Reed. Also turning in a solid week has been Michigan center Graham Glasgow, who stood out last week at the East-West Shrine Game. …

*We at haven't taken a hard look at the North squad, which is being coached by the Dallas Cowboys, but reports are Ohio State wide receiver Braxton Miller has been the team's standout player thus far. …

*Other North players standing out: North Dakota State quarterback Carson Wentz, Penn State defensive end Carl Nassib, Notre Dame guard Nick Martin, Southern California quarterback Cody Kessler and Stanford offensive lineman Josh Garrett. …

Images from day two of the Reese's Senior Bowl held in Mobile, Ala.

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