Mobile, Ala. – The Jaguars football leadership, including the new general manager, head coach and the offensive and defensive coordinators, made their first appearance at the Senior Bowl in Mobile on Tuesday morning.
Priority since the introductory press conference has been for the coaching staff hiring process. When that process is complete, the staff can take a closer look at the existing roster and establish an identity on offense and defense.
"Most of the time is being spent talking about the staff -- that's really been my whole focus," head coach Gus Bradley said. "I know we're talking about next week really trying to get down to watching some tape and making evaluations."
Offensive coordinator Jedd Fisch said that in order to establish an offensive identity, the staff must first evaluate the players already in place.
"We're going to finish the staff, and right after that is over we're going to start grinding on personnel," Fisch said. "And really what we're looking for, number one, is what we have, and then from there we'll then get into scheme. We have to make sure that we really know our players inside and out first."
"We'll have a chance to sit down as a staff and say, 'alright, with the guys we have, this is the direction we want to go -- and we'll go from there," Bradley added.
Without a full evaluation of the current Jaguars roster, searching for specific players at the Senior Bowl can be difficult. But something that catches eyes during the week can plant the seed for player interviews and workouts at the Scouting Combine or in the weeks leading up to the draft.
After making ten visits to Mobile for the Senior Bowl, Fisch understands what to look for.
"You really can't sit there and examine them (individual players) or you'll never see the other guys," Fisch said. "Certain guys you're like 'wow, he just made a play,' or 'what a throw.' Then you start looking at those guys and by the end of the week or at the end of a couple of practices you get a decent feel of a guy's footwork and can you feel his presence. That's really what you're looking for."
Senior Bowl success at the quarterback position
For quarterbacks, good performances during Senior Bowl week can open the eyes of scouts and personnel people and begin a rise up draft boards.
No one understands that better than North Carolina State quarterback Mike Glennon.
San Diego Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers, a Wolfpack alumnus who was originally projected as a low first round or high second round selection, had a huge week in Mobile in 2004 working under the Chargers coaching staff.
"I heard Philip Rivers really jumped up the boards from playing here and playing in the game really well," Glennon said. "It seems like a lot of quarterbacks really helped themselves out with this opportunity."
Rivers ended up as the number four overall selection in the 2004 NFL Draft by the New York Giants, who traded him and draft picks to San Diego for number one overall selection Eli Manning.
Glennon was also one of the surprises from Monday's weigh-in event at the Arthur Outlaw Convention Center. The tall, slender quarterback was listed at 6-foot-5 at North Carolina State, but came in at 6-foot-6 ¾.
"I don't know why I was at 6-5; I haven't been 6-5 since I was a sophomore in high school," Glennon said. "I believe last year when the scouts came I measured in at 6-7, so whatever it is, it's up there."
As for the thought of too much height being an issue at the position, Glennon understands how the height helps and hinders his play.
"You don't have to worry about seeing over linemen and finding lanes," Glennon said. "I think the long leverage may prohibit my athleticism a little bit, but it also might generate a little more in my throwing motion and how the ball comes out."
Senior Bowl buzz**
- Both the North and South teams practiced at Ladd-Peebles Stadium in Mobile on Tuesday. The North team, coached by the Oakland Raiders coaching staff, working for nearly two hours in the morning while the South team, coached by the Detroit Lions staff, worked in the afternoon.
- In a media session during the North team practice on Tuesday, Jaguars Offensive Coordinator Jedd Fisch reflected on the teaching of head coaches he had learned from throughout his career. "Coach (Steve) Spurrier to Dom Capers then from Brian Billick to Mike Shanahan and then from Pete Carroll to Al Golden; every stop has been one that I have learned," Fisch said. "When you look back on it today, you realize that it was a tremendous opportunity to learn."
- South Carolina running back Marcus Lattimore attended Senior Bowl practice on Tuesday. Though he is ineligible to participate in the game, he is expected to interview with teams during the week. Lattimore expects to be ready to participate in the 2013 NFL season despite a knee injury that ended his junior season. Central Michigan left tackle Eric Fisher has been one of the hot names this week, playing well enough that some believe he could challenge for the top left tackle spot in the April draft.