June 12, 2012; Jacksonville FL, USA; Jacksonville Jaguars wide receiver Justin Blackmon (14) runs away from cornerback Kevin Rutland (22) after catching a pass during minicamp at Florida Blue Health & Wellness Practice Fields. Mandatory Credit: Phil Sears-US PRESSWIRE
On the Jacksonville Jaguars current depth chart, the starting wide receivers are listed as Laurent Robinson and Cecil Shorts III as the "X" and "Z" receivers, respectively. While many will feel that Shorts is merely keeping the "Z" position warm until first-round pick Justin Blackmon gets up to speed, it might be more beneficial for Blackmon to work out of the slot position early in the 2012 NFL season.
If you watched Justin Blackmon play in college, which most of us seemingly have, his biggest asset is catching the football in traffic and breaking tackles. His biggest weakness is beating press coverage and gaining separation down the football field.
It would seem to me, especially with the way Shorts is playing right now, it might be the Jaguars best bet to have Blackmon work out of the slot position where he will be facing off coverage and can eat up the cushion the nickel corners will generally grant him. Not only that, but it will play to his strength as a player and let him work through traffic with crosses, quick slants and come backs. It should be an easy way for the Jaguars to work Blackmon into the lineup quickly without overloading him with a full outside receiver route tree.