OWINGS MILLS, Md. – So far, so good.
Jaguars Head Coach Doug Marrone spoke Tuesday before the second of two joint practices with the Baltimore Ravens. That meant his assessment covered just Monday's first of two practices.
On that front, Marrone liked what he saw.
"It was a good day all around for everyone, for both teams," Marrone said shortly before the Jaguars and Ravens practiced at the Under Armour Performance Center Tuesday afternoon.
"I don't think you go in these days saying, 'Who had the upper hand?' It was just two teams that worked against each other. We came out of [Monday] and we got better."
The teams did so without incident, something that had been a focus for both teams.
"We're expecting another good day," Marrone said. "The players, I give them a lot of credit … both teams have shown lot of class. That's obviously what we expected coming in. …
"Did I feel like we got better yesterday? I did, because of the work we did against Baltimore."
Here are four more takeaways from Marrone's Tuesday availability:
*Onwualu's injury is serious. Veteran linebacker James Onwualu was carted from the field Monday during a special teams drill. While Marrone declined to detail the injury, he called it "significant." "We don't expect him to be back, unfortunately," Marrone said. Onwualu had been listed as a co-starter at strong-side linebacker with second-year veteran Leon Jacobs on the first unofficial '19 depth chart released by the team Sunday. "He was right in the thick of it to the point where you say, 'You know what? If we needed to make a decision today, he would be on the team or not? – I would say he might be on the team.' … It's tough. He has worked his butt off and worked real hard. I saw him [Monday] afterward. It's just a tough situation. You thank the player for everything he put in, but you kind of know what the road looks like ahead."
*Marrone is philosophical about depth. Marrone was asked about the linebacker depth in the wake of Onwualu's injury – and with rookie linebacker Quincy Williams expected to be out through the preseason with a slightly torn meniscus in his right knee. Onwualu's injury means Jacobs, Myles Jack and Williams likely will be the starters when healthy. Veteran Najee Goode is working with the starters in Williams' short-term absence. Marrone said observers sometimes see depth differently than those within a team – and that observers often grade depth only on players they have seen. "Once you have a backup that has played, and has produced, then you can say, 'He's pretty good,''' Marrone said, adding, "That's why you have these games, these preseason games, so you can put those players in there to see are they capable enough down the road to become starters, or are they capable of being viewed as some depth, as good backups."
*The Jaguars' wide receivers are getting a test this week. The Jaguars' front-line healthy receivers – a group that includes Chris Conley, Dede Westbrook, DJ Chark Jr., Keelan Cole and Terrelle Pryor Sr. – appeared to have a good day Monday against a strong Ravens defense. "They competed," Marrone said. "It's a great challenge. We understand and acknowledge that Baltimore last year was the No. 1 defense in the NFL. We have a ton of respect for those guys on the other side of the ball. We know everything we do against them is going to have to be earned. We felt we were able to compete against a good bunch of players, especially in the secondary."
*Fournette's receiving is getting noticed. Jaguars running back Leonard Fournette stood out Monday in practice as a receiver, catching three passes and showing impressive quickness and confidence in passing situations. "People have asked me the one thing about Leonard – and this was a few years ago – and it's his pass-catching ability," Marrone said of the No. 4 overall selection in the 2017 NFL Draft. "That's not something that we were able to see a lot of when he was coming out of [Louisiana State University]. That wasn't a problem against LSU. It was easier to just turn around and hand him the football. But he's someone we can use in the passing game and he has skill. Any time we can get him the ball – whether it's throwing him the football, pitching him the football, whatever it may be … -- we have an opportunity to break tackles, and obviously he can run very well."