You already know that the Jacksonville Jaguars selected the next Charles Woodson last night in Jalen Ramsey. Well, depending on who you ask, it's either Charles Woodson... or Richard Sherman.
After the selection, I got on the phone with another defensive back new to the Jaguars -- Tashaun Gipson. We talked about his thoughts on the Jaguars newest addition:
Zach Goodall: What are your thoughts on the Jaguars selecting cornerback Jalen Ramsey with the fifth overall pick?
Tashaun Gipson: That was a nice pick, [it was] definitely a good pick for this team in general as well as for this secondary as he provides superior talent. The Jaguars secondary was definitely in need of improvement, and picking up guys like Prince [Amukamara] and myself in free agency certainly displayed progress and now the selection of Jalen Ramsey is the cherry on top for this secondary, the sweet spot.
Zach: The hot topic with Jalen Ramsey as of late has been whether he fits as a cornerback or a free safety at the NFL level -- where do you see Ramsey playing?
Gipson: From what I've seen out of Jalen as a player, I think he can thrive at either position, but I saw an interview a couple weeks back where [Ramsey] said that he considers himself to be a "shutdown cornerback" and that should be his goal as he enters the NFL, to be the next Deion Sanders.
I can't project where he will fit best myself, but I think you could either put him out there on an island at cornerback or line him up back there [at single high safety] and he will make plays.
Zach: If you were to give Jalen Ramsey an NFL comparison based off of his college film, who would you give him?
Gipson: Oh that's tough because he's so versatile, but I'd say from the thought of him playing corner I'd compare Jalen to Richard Sherman because he's long, rangy, and fast and can make big plays at the position. Jalen's got a similar long, lean body type that can play the ball well like Richard Sherman -- although his college numbers don't completely suggest it, I think Jalen can play the ball really well.
Zach: Speaking of Richard Sherman, would you consider the Jaguars secondary to be the next Legion of Boom with all of these renovations and upgrades to the secondary?
Gipson: I don't think we want to be the next Legion of Boom, I think we want to bring our own identity. We definitely want to ride with those guys in the Legion of Boom and anyone who's the best secondary in the league but we want to be unique -- we want to be our own and we want to be the best secondary in the league ourselves.
Zach: Do you have a name you want to coin for the Jaguars rising secondary yet?
Gipson: Oh man, I'll tell you what you put me on the spot a little bit! Give me a week, and next time we talk I promise you I'll have a name for the Jaguars secondary. I don't want to rush it, I want to have a name that fits us well and provides expectations for everyone to know that we're coming. I'll have a name for you the next time we chat.
Zach: What's your process going to be like in mentoring Jalen Ramsey?
Gipson: I've had success in this league at such a young age and I think I'll be able to help Jalen with that kind of experience at such a young age and I think every member of the secondary and team as a whole will try to do the same thing. You know, I'm going to take him under my wing as a defensive back and just always be there to teach and help him develop in the National Football League.
Zach: What do you think is the hardest part of the transition is from playing college football to playing in the NFL?
Gipson: Definitely the game speed, there's truly a difference in game speed. You know, all these NFL rosters are carrying receivers and players who run 4.4's [40-yard dashes] and you aren't used to that in college ball. In college it's hard to duplicate the professional game speed, I don't care if you're playing ACC or whatnot, there's truly a difference in speed when it comes to the different levels of the game.
Zach: With all of these additions to the defense, including the Ramsey selection last night, is it encouraging to know that the defense is being built and you're a part of it or is it more motivation to work harder to keep up with all the additions?
Gipson: I can't do anything but appreciate these moves by the team to really go out and make these moves to improve the defense. It really shows that the front office is doing everything in their power to make the Jaguars a winning team, to take us where we want to go.
I can't even tell you how excited I am to be on this team and to have new guys like Prince and Jalen with me, you know I keep hearing that Jacksonville is going "worst to first" and I hate to hear that "worst" but I love hearing that "first". We are truly locked in on what we want and that's to get better.
Zach: Is there any player you want the team to select in the second round in particular?
Gipson: It's hard for me to say who I'd want in the second round because there are some guys that have slid from potential first rounders into the second now, guys like UCLA linebacker Myles Jack, and I mean if he's there when we pick, who's to say we shouldn't take him? It's all depending on who's available when we're on the clock but I think we just need to take the best available player that the team needs at this point.
Zach: We've got Tashaun Gipson and Jalen Ramsey, faces of the Jaguars secondary for years to come, how does that feel?
Gipson: Man, it's truly awesome, it's an awesome feeling to be here and be on this team. We're building through free agency and the draft and I'm excited for the challenges and what lies ahead for the Jaguars.