There is a lot of mystery around the Jacksonville Jaguars OTTO linebacker position and it seems to cause a lot of confusion. Similar to people calling the big end position the "elephant" (which is actually the LEO...), the duty of the position often gets confused with the role of a traditional SAM linebacker and even the WILL linebacker. We tried to explain what the OTTO's responsibility is during the offseason since everyone wanted to slot Myles Jack there, but it's clear now that's not going to be his role.
The role is so different from the rest of the linebacker group, that Jaguars defensive coordinator Todd Wash has separated the OTTO group into their own meeting room, apart from the rest of the linebackers.
"It's totally different," Wash told reporters when asked about separating the two groups. "When you look at our stack ‘backers, they're behind the ball. They have all of these things we call hook issues and stuff like that, where our OTTOs never have any of that."
The OTTO is kind of like a combo position, where the team would like the player to also operate like a defensive end at times, which is why players like Dan Skuta, Ryan Davis and even potentially Tyrone Holmes will get looks there. The three have the ability to do the linebacker duties asked of it, as well as the ability to come off the edge and get into the backfield.
"We're also trying to get our OTTOs, which are [DE] Ryan [Davis] and [Dan] Skuta to play some defensive end. You can never have enough pass rushers," Wash added. "Both of them are able to play on first and second down, at defensive end in 11 personnel in the nickel. It's an opportunity for them to concentrate on the outside linebacker stuff and then also they are being taught some D-line stuff."
I'm still a bit unsure how much this role will be used through the course of game, since it's likely to come off on third downs and there is the question if you would rather have one of these players on the edge over someone like Yannick Ngakoue, but perhaps the preseason will give us a good indication on how this role will fit with the packages.