Jacksonville Jaguars linebacker Paul Posluszny will officially be making the transition to strongside linebacker (SAM) for the team for the 2017 season, he confirmed in a press conference on Tuesday. The move had been speculated for a while once the comments made by both general manager Dave Caldwell and head coach Doug Marrone that they wanted former second-round pick Myles Jack to be a three-down player and play the majority of snaps on defense. The only way for that to happen would be less snaps for either Poz or Telvin Smith.
"It's going to be the most difficult change of my career," Posluszny said when asked about the move. "They said it's going to be what's best for the team, so that's what we're going to do."
It was pretty evident from his answers that Poz didn't really seem too happy with the decision to move him to the SAM linebacker role without a real competition for the middle linebacker position, but he understands that if it's what helps the team win more games he's willing to go through it. Now that the Jaguars have dumped the OTTO position, it still remains to be seen what exactly the role of the SAM linebacker in 2017 will be with Posluszny.
"It's too early to tell as far as everything that's going to be asked [of the SAM linebacker], they'll take into account body type and all," Posluszny said. "In years past it was more like a pass rusher, a big... like a 3-4 outside linebacker. Obviously not the case anymore."
Posluszny also touched on a little more why he categorized the move as the most difficult of his career.
"For 10 years I've played middle linebacker," Poz said. "My entire perspective of how to play football in the NFL, my entire identity has been that and now it's not the case."
If you get the chance, watch the press conference in full on Jaguars.com. Poz didn't really seem too enthused with the idea of the change. There's no doubt that Posluszny will embrace the challenge of the transition to SAM linebacker, even if he's not thrilled about it.