clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

UDFA Roster Predictions: Defense

New, comments

With day 1 of training camp in the books we take a look at the defensive UDFA and their roster chances.

Phil Sears-USA TODAY Sports

Most of the talk this offseason has been centered around Blake Bortles and the rest of the 2014 draft class, as it should be. Caldwell and Co. appear to have put together another great class on paper and it's easy to get excited about the team they have been putting together. What gets lost in all this, however, are the other 19 players that the team has brought in to training camp. While many of them will be cut by the end of it, there's always the chance that a few will end up on the final roster come final cuts. Here are the defensive UDFAs along with my predictions on their roster chances.

DeAndre Coleman, DT, California

Career Stats, Pro Day Performance*, Notable Achievements
Solo Tackles Assisted Tackles Total Tackles Tackles for Loss Sacks Pass Deflections
64 59 123 25 6 3
Height Weight 40 Yard Vertical Broad Jump Shuttle 3-Cone Bench Press Reps
6'4.5" 314 5.06 25.5" 103" 5.10 7.71 24*

*Bench Reps taken at NFL Combine

  • Played in all 49 games over 4 seasons at Cal
  • Named Captain for the 2013 season
  • 2012 and 2013 All-Pac-12 second team

Overview:

DeAndre Coleman is a space eater, and as such he fits right in to the Jaguars D-Line as a 1-technique tackle. Coleman excelled at taking on the double team and was a force in stopping the run when left alone. His size and ability are what the Jaguars are looking for on the D-Line and he could find himself in the rotation if he performs well in preseason. He is lacking in pass rushing ability and at times will try to take on defenders to high. If the coaching staff can iron out his technique he can become an eventual starter in this defense.

Prediction:

The Jaguars have been in need of a solid 1-technique after Roy Miller did not live up to expectations next season. If DeAndre Coleman can put out a good performance this preseason he has a good chance to land a roster spot.

Ricky Havili-Heimuli, DT, Oregon

Career Stats, Pro Day Performance*, Notable Achievements
Solo Tackles Assisted Tackles Total Tackles Tackles for Loss Sacks Pass Deflections
35 39 74 7 2 1
Height Weight 40 Yard Vertical Broad Jump Shuttle 3-Cone Bench Press Reps
6'4" 329 5.31 25" 94" 4.81 7.71 26

*Did not participate in NFL Combine

  • Played in 50/53 games over 4-year career
  • Played effectively in rotation over 4 years
Overview:

Ricky Havili-Heimuli is another space-eater 1-technique who could wind up with a roster spot if he proves he can get the job done. Havili-Heimuli is hard to move off of his initial point and uses a bull rush to take on the offensive line. He has trouble moving laterally and isn't one to really make plays on the ball. He will need to work on his footwork and show that he has more to his skill set then just strength to land a spot on the roster.

Prediction:

As mentioned before, 1-technique is one of the bigger needs for the Jaguars and Havili-Heimuli is in a good position to prove something. Even with the chance, I find a hard time seeing him end up on the final roster unless he is able to outperform DeAndre Coleman.

Marcus Whitfield, OLB, Maryland

Career Stats, Pro Day Performance*, Notable Achievements
Solo Tackles Assisted Tackles Total Tackles Tackles for Loss Sacks Pass Deflections Forced Fumbles
40 33 73 19.5 12 6 3
Height Weight 40 Yard Vertical Broad Jump Shuttle 3-Cone Bench Press Reps
6'3" 250 4.66 33" 125" 4.34 7.42 18

*Did not participate in NFL Combine

  • 15.5 tackles for loss, 9 sacks in 2013 season
  • 2013 All-ACC Honorable mention
  • ACC Linebacker of the week 9/16/13 (3 Sacks vs UConn)
  • Started as a Defensive End
Overview:

Marcus Whitfield took off his senior season to become one of the ACC's top pass rushers. He showed he has great instincts both off the edge as a pass rusher and in run defense. He uses his hands well to get by the Offensive line and get to the ball carrier. He has a tendency to overpursue on plays and takes bad angles, but he is able to recover on these plays. He plays fast and athletically, which combined with his long frame suits him for the OTTO linebacker role. He has experience as a Defensive end which could lead to reps at LEO, but his instincts are better suited to playing linebacker.

Prediction:

While the Jaguars seemingly have two solid options at OTTO this season, Whitfield will get enough reps to prove himself with the injury to Dekoda Watson. Whitfield could end up on the roster depending on Watson's status to start the season, but if not I feel the Jaguars will do what they can to stash him on the practice squad.

Deion Belue, CB, Alabama

Career Stats*, Pro Day Performance**, Notable Achievements
Solo Tackles Assisted Tackles Total Tackles Tackles for loss Passes Defended Interceptions
45 15 60 7.5 10 3
Height Weight 40 Yard Vertical Broad Jump Shuttle 3-Cone Bench Press Reps
5'11" 182 4.52 36.5" 117" 4.38 7.00 11*

*Stats from 2 years at Alabama **Bench Reps taken at NFL Combine

  • Transferred from Northern Mississippi (JUCO) after 2 years
  • 2011 NJCAA All-American second team
Overview:

Deion Belue is a slightly undersized cornerback who was able to succeed based on good awareness and positioning against taller receivers. He was mediocre in man coverage, but instead succeeded in a zone scheme. He is fast enough to make a break on the ball and knows where to be, but he doesn't seem to fit the long, press corner mold that the coaching staff looks for. He can be successful in the right situation, but I don't see that as being in Jacksonville.

Prediction:

Deion Belue is a late signing by the Jaguars which shows that they've seen something in the cornerback that interests them. In spite of this, I don't see him making the team unless he comes out strong in training camp.

Rashaad Reynolds, CB, Oregon State

Career Stats, Combine Performance, Notable Achievements
Solo Tackles Assisted Tackles Total Tackles Tackles for loss Passes Defended Interceptions
147 71 218 6 29 10
Height Weight 40 Yard Vertical Broad Jump Shuttle 3-Cone Bench Press Reps
5'10" 187 4.51 37.5" 123" 4.00 6.72 20

  • 2013 All Pac-12 second team
  • Tied for most interceptions in 2013 with 6
  • Played in every game in 4 year career at Oregon State
Overview:

While Rashaad Reynolds is also slightly undersized, he seems to fit what Jacksonville looks for in a cornerback. He has a feel for man coverage and is very athletic with good leaping ability to defend the pass. He aggressively fills in to stop the run and is disciplined enough to stay home when needed. he also has good instincts as a gunner on special team which should tremendously help his roster chances. He isn't as big or as strong as you would want in a press corner, but he has potential to play well enough in spite of that.

Prediction:

Reynolds can find a spot on the roster if he shows he is an asset both at corner and on special teams. I expect him to compete for a spot and is a candidate for the practice squad if he doesn't quite make it.

Jerome Junior, S, Winston-Salem State

Career Stats*, Pro Day Performance**, Notable Achievements
Solo Tackles Assisted Tackles Total Tackles Tackles for loss Passes Defended Interceptions
96 71 167 4.5 14 6

*Career Stats from 3 years at UConn **No Pro Day stats available

  • Dismissed from UConn for violating team rules
  • Blocked three punts over his career

Overview:

Jerome Junior seemed to play more of a strong safety role at UConn and Winston-Salem and mainly contributed in a run support role. He didn't really flash in coverage but he filled in well when running backs got to the next level. UConn never disclosed his reason for dismissal from the team, so that is potentially worrying. He did enough in rookie tryouts to earn a roster spot, but it is unlikely he will make the team.

Prediction:

It was hard to tell what we got with Jerome Junior. He was solid at UConn but never really showed anything special. i don't expect him to make the Jaguar's roster.

Craig Loston, S,

Career Stats, Combine Performance, Notable Achievements
Solo Tackles Assisted Tackles Total Tackles Tackles for loss Passes Defended Interceptions
84 64 148 8 10 1
Height Weight 40 Yard Vertical Broad Jump Shuttle 3-Cone Bench Press Reps
6'0" 187 4.65 32.5" 119" 4.35 7.15 12
  • 2012, 2013 All-SEC second team
  • 2013 All-Bowl Team
  • Played in 45 games over 4 years
Overview:

Craig Loston is another strong safety, run stopping type for the Jaguars. He plays aggressively and isn't afraid to give up his body to make a play. This leads to some injury concerns, but he hasn't suffered anything too serious. Loston excels at making plays in the run game but he also has instincts to defend the pass well. He has short arms and minimal leaping ability which could lead to a hard time against jump ball passes. He can be overagressive and leave his feat too much, but overall is a very smart player with a very good head for the game. He also has experience as both a gunner and a jammer on special teams which will raise his stock with the team.

Prediction:

Loston seems to almost be a poor man's Jonathan Cyprien which looks good for landing a roster spot. The Jaguars could stand to gain some safety depth and Loston has a chance to help out the team.

Kasey Redfern, P, Wofford

Career Stats, Pro Day Performance*, Notable Achievements
Punts Punt Yards Average FGs Made FGs Attempted Percent XPs Made XPs Attempted Percentage
146 5782 39.6 11 19 57.9 52 56 92.9
Height Weight 40 Yard Vertical Broad Jump Shuttle 3-Cone Bench Press Reps
6'1.5" 208 4.83 36" N/A N/A N/A N/A

*Bench Reps taken at NFL Combine

  • Was on kick off duty as well as punting
  • Career long 53 yard field goal
  • Limited duties as placekicker
Overview:

It seems like Redfern was brought in as a camp-leg so Bryan Anger and Josh Scobee didn't have to take all of the reps. This is very common for training camp and it is extremely unlikely that Redfern makes the roster. As an aside, its pretty impressive that he has a 36" vertical.

Prediction:

Kasey Redfern will not make the final roster.

Charley Hughlett, LS,

Career Stats*, Pro Day Performance**, Notable Achievements
Height Weight 40 Yard Vertical Broad Jump Shuttle 3-Cone Bench Press Reps
6'3" 246 4.99 32" 115" 4.34 7.06 22
*No stats available **Did not participate in NFL Combine
  • 2011,2010 All-C-USA second team
  • 2008 C-USA All Freshman team
Overview:

Where Kasey Redfern is in training camp to relieve the kickers, Hughlett is here so Carson Tinker doesn't do all of the work. He has very little chance to make the roster.

Prediction:

Charley Hughlett will not make the final roster.