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Jaguars LB Cassius Marsh embracing opportunity as versatile defender

Back to where it all began for his family in Jacksonville, linebacker Cassius Marsh is excited for his new opportunity with the Jaguars.

San Francisco 49ers versus Chicago Bears Photo by Nhat V. Meyer/MediaNews Group/The Mercury News via Getty Images

The Jacksonville Jaguars will be shifting gears defensively heading into the 2020 season. No longer will they run their standard 4-3 defensive set in base packages, used years by defensive coordinator Todd Wash, and former head coach Gus Bradley. With new personnel entering the fold, the Jaguars will be adapting, and linebacker Cassius Marsh hopes to help in that transition.

Marsh, 27, is entering his seventh season in the NFL after having bounced around from several teams, including the Seattle Seahawks, San Francisco 49ers, and most recently, the Arizona Cardinals. Playing in various schemes, standing up as an outside linebacker, and playing in a three-point stance at defensive end, Marsh has done it all.

Marsh’s dad, Curtis Marsh Sr., was drafted by the Jaguars in 1995 as a receiver, and although Cassius Marsh doesn’t play the position now, he did have some playing time on offense at UCLA.

At UCLA, the versatile defender played all along the defensive line, and had a bit of fun on offense too. Not so dissimilar to Jaguars linebacker Myles Jack who spent one year with Marsh at the university in 2013.

Yesterday, during a local media video conference call, Marsh spoke about his time with Jack, noting that while the two did spend some time on the other side of the football in college, he doesn’t see the two moving over there anytime soon with the Jaguars. “I think there is plenty of talent over there and they will manage without us,” Marsh said.

“My time with Myles [Jack] [at UCLA] was great,” Marsh said. “He was a super humble young guy who came in and contributed in a huge way playing on both sides of the ball. I loved his work ethic, his athleticism and his versatility. I love the kid, and I have been super happy to see his success since coming to the Jaguars.”

It would be interesting. Marsh typically played tight end if he was to be used, with Jack at running back for the Bruins in their defense-on-offense package. However, that won’t be happening in Jacksonville. Instead, Marsh will look to bring versatility to the team’s defense with hopes of earning the starting position at SAM linebacker in the same place where his father was originally drafted.

“I think it is a great opportunity and it is a great defense. I am looking forward to the challenge,” he said. “For me, I came into the league on a team that was super deep with defensive linemen and pass rushers and just good edge players. They had an ‘each one, teach one’ mentality where the vets really took young guys or any guy who needed help under their wing.

“Whatever knowledge that I have that I feel like can help guys, I am always open to sharing it and helping whoever needs help. I am looking forward to getting out there and getting to know my teammates better.”

In his career, Marsh has tallied 159 total tackles (114 solos), 25 tackles for loss, 14 sacks, and 28 quarterback hits in 84 games (eight starts). While he may not be the most accomplished player, Marsh should look to bring depth at the team’s linebacker position with the help of rookie linebacker K’Lavon Chaisson and veteran linebacker Leon Jacobs.