Jacksonville Jaguars wide receiver and first-round pick Justin Blackmon was able to hit the practice field in full pads on Monday, for his first padded practice with the team and wasted no time impressing those in attendance.
"Just look at him. You know he’s a big, physical receiver. The way he plays he’s really aggressive when the ball is in the air, and that’s what quarterbacks like to see," Jaguars quarterback Blaine Gabbert said after practice. "When the ball is in the air it’s his ball. He’s going to do whatever he can to either break that up from the defensive back or catch it."
Blackmon reportedly had back-to-back redzone touchdowns on Monday as well, with one of those being a catch in double coverage with the safety bearing down on him, which should be something we see a lot of from Blackmon. Given his skill set and what little we've seen of the Jaguars passing scheme, Blackmon should be an easy, reliable target for Gabbert so long as he catches up to speed with the playbook.
"It’s going good. Like I said yesterday, me and Coach (Jerry) Sullivan meet a lot. We meet every day and he’s just trying to get me caught up," Blackmon said on Monday following practice. "It’s a lot of meetings, but like I said it’s good stuff. It’s very, very good meeting. He’s a great coach. He teaches a lot of things that I can improve on and I take them and try to take them to the field."
Prior to Friday night's game, the Jaguars receivers had struggled to get open and catch the football, but drops didn't seem to be a problem in the actual game. With the addition of Blackmon and his ability to catch the football in traffic and in the redzone, it should be that much easier for Blaine Gabbert and the Jaguars offense going forward.