The Jacksonville Jaguars have a lot of expectations as 2018 training camp begins, be it from the fans, media or players themselves. Part of the reason the Jaguars have such high expectations is because they’re confident as players in their collective talent, building off the success of last season.
“I think we are the best team in the league. I am not knocking anyone,” Jaguars linebacker Telvin Smith said on Wednesday when he was asked if he thought the Jaguars were the best team in the AFC. “There are some talented teams out there. If I don’t lock in right now and believe whole heartedly that my team will be the last team standing, then I don’t think you really are ready for that fight that is about to come.”
The first part of Telvin’s quote is going to be the click-y headline grabber, which means most people will miss the meat of what his point and mentality are. Telvin believes the Jaguars are the best team in the league. Full stop. He does not mean that as disrespect to the other teams. Full stop. He believes that you have to have that mentality, thinking you’re the best, in order to be the best.
“I think you can only set the bar too high when you do not believe in yourself. I think this team is full of confidence, full of talent, full of hard work and dedication,” Smith said when asked about potentially setting expectations too high. “The bar is as high as we set it. It is not where can we go, it is where do we want to go. That is what we are working on right now, making sure we go where we want to go come February.”
Thinking and believe the Jaguars are the best team in the NFL, for the players on the Jaguars, isn’t about being arrogant. It’s about mental preparation and setting the mindset to be a winning team. Winning teams know they’re good. They don’t just think they’re good.