The Jacksonville Jaguars have done a mini-roster transformation this offseason, which is a bit odd for a team that was minutes away from playing in the Super Bowl last season. Not only did the Jaguars bring in potentially at least three new starters on the offensive side of the ball, they also lost some long time veteran players that have been cornerstones of the offense and defense.
These players weren’t just long time veterans however, they were also long time captains and locker room leaders. Both tight end Marcedes Lewis and linebacker Paul Posluszny had been captains for the Jaguars for the past few seasons and both were veterans that the younger players went to in the locker room. Both were aging veterans the team constantly tried to supplant and both helped settle in the young players trying to take their jobs without much complaint, if any.
With the current moves the team made, three of the team’s five captains in 2017 are now no longer on the roster. The two remaining captains are center Brandon Linder and linebacker Telvin Smith. That’s a lot to lose in a single offseason, so it’s going to be something to think about going forward into training camp.
Personally, I don’t think it’s going to be a big issue for the team. Most of the players are mature and guys like Calais Campbell, Malik Jackson and Telvin Smith have stepped right into leadership roles on the team. All three command respect with just their play on the field, and at least two of the three talk the talk for the locker room.
I think the Jaguars have enough strong personalities in the locker room from good players that losing that much long time cornerstones won’t have a huge effect, but it’s something to think about as we go forward. Especially watching who is going to step up as the vocal leader on the offensive side of the ball.