To help get through the boring NFL offseason, we're going to attempt a series of breaking down the Jacksonville Jaguars 90-man roster. This is obviously subject to change with Dave Caldwell's wont to churn the roster and I'm sure that trend will continue going forward. Nevertheless, we'll start going down the roster sheet in alphabetical order and touch on why a player might improve, or regress and their chances of making the roster.
Next up, punter Bryan Anger.
Yep. A punter. A punter the Jacksonville Jaguars drafted in the third round of the 2012 NFL Draft. The same third round that Russell Wilson was picked in, of which we're constantly reminded of. It's the last stink left on the roster in a prominent spot from former general manager Gene Smith and that stain will probably be there for a bit.
Why he might improve:
The Jaguars should have improved depth for the 2014 season, so just by nature their special teams coverage should be better which could help out Anger's bottom line punting. It's also coming up on Anger's third year in the NFL, so he should be accustomed to what the team wants in special teams by now, as well as a returning special teams coach and things being consistent.
The Jaguars should also be better on offense this season, which could lead to less punts for Anger and in turn less chances for him to mess up a kick. In Anger's first two years in the NFL, he ranked second and first respectively in punt attempts. When you punt that much, the law of averages say you're going to screw a few of them up.
Why he might regress:
Anger could end up status quo, despite the improvement on the Jaguars overall depth and in turn the kick coverage. Anger has had a habit of booming his punts without much arch on them, which leads to a better chance for the returner to pick a lane and grab yardage, putting the coverage unit out of position. Anger improved on this some in 2013, but it was a big issue for him in 2012. Anger's punts had the sixth highest return average in 2012 with 12.4 but he cut that nearly in half in 2013 for an average return of just 7.0.
The other big issue, which is more-so controlling the power and arch on the punts, was Anger getting far too many touch backs on kicks near the 50-yard line, instead of having them downed inside the 10 or coffin-cornering them. Anger was fifth in the NFL in this aspect in 2013, up from his number in 2012 on just a few more attempts.
Chances of making the final roster:
Unless Anger just goes to complete crap in training camp and the preseason, he's making the roster. While I wouldn't call him an elite punter, he has the natural ability to be, he just has to get the consistency down. As I said when he was drafted in the third round, at punter you're usually fine as long as the guy isn't Matt Turk awful and Anger certainly isn't that.