JACKSONVILLE – Doug Marrone spoke to the media Sunday.
Five takeaways from the head coach's availability on Day 9 Jaguars 2019 Training Camp at the Dream Finders Homes Flex Field adjacent to TIAA Bank Field:
*Marrone is pleased about defensive end Yannick Ngakoue's return. The fourth-year defensive end ended his training-camp holdout Sunday, reporting without an agreement with the team for a second contract. "We're excited," Marrone said of Ngakoue's return. "He's ready to go, he's in great shape, and we're all together." Marrone said Ngakoue passed his conditioning test before practice, and Ngakoue worked with the starters Sunday during practice. "Yann's always been in great shape, ready to go," Marrone said. "He's an anxious guy. He wants to get in there and he's ready to go. He wants to go all the way, which is just how he's wound."
*Dareus can do more in pass rush. Marrone on Sunday reiterated what he said during the offseason about defensive tackle Marcell Dareus – that he believes the former All-Pro selection can recapture the pass-rush effectiveness that once made him a double-digit sacks player. Dareus, who played at a near Pro Bowl level last season, provided a major boost for the Jaguars' run defense upon being traded to the Jaguars from Buffalo in 2017. Dareus had 17.5 sacks in 2013-2014 for Buffalo – Marrone's two seasons as the Bills' head coach. "When he first came here there was a big expectation of him to help us with stopping the run," Marrone said. "That was a main focus, and it was coming from everyone: from us as coaches, from fans, from the press, so he was getting that. He was an excellent pass rusher when I had him before, and we want to get him to, 'Hey, you stay with the run stuff, but let's take it to the next level where you were before. Don't let all of the stuff on the outside, we want you to be the best player you can be and be able to be a third down rusher.' He was totally focused on proving that he was going to help us with the run game, which he did in a big step. Sometimes players get locked into that, and we want to make sure we open it up and he can get after it."
*Marrone likes Goode. Marrone on Sunday discussed veteran Najee Goode, who is working at weak-side linebacker with rookie starter Quincy Williams out for the preseason with a slight meniscus tear in his right knee. Goode, an eight-year veteran, spent time with Tampa Bay (2012), Philadelphia (2013-2017) and Indianapolis (2018) before signing with the Jaguars as a free agent this past offseason. "He can run," Marrone said. "He can hit. He's got good instincts, sees the field really well, very good communicator. I really like him, good football player."
*This week is about evaluation. Marrone on what he gets from joint practices such as the two the Jaguars will have in Baltimore against the Ravens this week: "I don't necessarily think that when you do joint practices you get more from the players. I think players are pretty much pros, they're professionals. They're going to go out there and it's practice. They're going to go out there and that mode of practice is going to continue, because it's not full-go, meaning it's not live tackling in those situations. So for me, what I get out of it, I get an evaluation. You're going against different guys, different schemes, different coverages. You can watch how players adapt. You're probably going to get something that you haven't seen, which you want to see how they adapt to it."
*News on PUP players may come soon. The Jaguars have had three players – wide receiver Marqise Lee (knee), left tackle Cam Robinson (knee) and linebacker Jake Ryan (knee) – unavailable since training camp began, with Lee and Robinson on the physically unable to perform list and Ryan on the reserve/did not report list. All can be activated at any time once cleared to practice. Marrone on Sunday said he expect to provide an update on the timing of the trio's return while the team is in Baltimore this week.