The Jacksonville Jaguars have started Phase 3 of their 2017 offseason with OTA practices on Tuesday morning. The roster currently stands at 90 and there will be dozens of tweaks, cuts, and moves to pare that roster down to 53 in time for the regular season opener.
But if you combined all the Jaguars rosters since their inception in 1995, what would be the ultimate 90-man roster?
The quarterback position has been relatively weak in the franchise’s history, which means I’m building the roster around the running game and efficient quarterback play. Blake Bortles doesn’t make this list because no quarterback — not even Blaine Gabbert — has been more volatile in his play.
Running backs (10)
Maurice Jones-Drew (KR)
Le'Shai Maston (FB)
It’s kind of insane to think that the best two running backs in Jaguars history played together for three seasons. If the quarterback position is weak, I think this is where the Jaguars are strongest on offense. Leonard Fournette is one of the few current Jaguars players I’d put on this roster, not because he’s shown anything yet, but if you had a choice between him and, say, LaBrandon Toefield — who are you giving a spot to? (Sorry, LaBrandon.)
Wide receivers (11)
Reggie Barlow (PR)
Before anyone gives me grief about Willie Jackson, just know that the only receiver with a better catching percentage than him in the top 10 is Keenan McCardell. And Reggie Barlow was a hell of a punt return man.
Tight ends (5)
You’d think a franchise that had Tom Coughlin for its first eight seasons would have better tight ends, but nope. I don’t think Pete Mitchell gets the respect he deserves and I think Kyle Brady gets too much of it.
Offensive linemen (13)
Here’s where we get into the trenches with the heart and soul of this team. A starting five of Tony Boselli, Leon Searcy, Brad Meester, Ben Coleman, and Uche Nwaneri would be choice.
Defensive tackles (9)
Tom Coughlin knew how to evaluate linemen. He was responsible for picking the team’s best offensive linemen, signing the next-best two, and later got the best two interior defensive linemen in back-to-back years.
Defensive ends (9)
Another relatively weak group even if Tony Brackens — who was one of the most athletically gifted players to ever put on a Jaguars uniform — headlines it.
Imagine Daryl Smith, Kevin Hardy, and Mike Peterson in the same defensive backfield. Imagine it.
This is one of the deeper position groups on the 90-man roster and it surprised me how many quality cornerbacks we’ve had — albeit only for a short time for each. Combine them all in one list and... it doesn’t look so bad.
In my opinion, Deon Grant is one of the most underrated Jaguars players ever and I’m including Rashean Mathis.
Special teams (4)
I want a kicking competition between Josh Scobee and Mike Hollis and I want it now.