It’s time to start fresh. At least that was what the sentiment that Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence shared on Tuesday when he met with the media for the first time since the end of last season.
After a 3-14 season amidst perhaps the worst head coach in NFL history at the helm, the Jaguars dealt with far too many distractions and issues as they continued down rough stretch after rough stretch. Still, the team’s signal-caller was able to weather the storm, never too high or low as the season progressed.
Now, with a new coach in Doug Pederson in charge, the Jaguars look to turn that around, beginning with the start of the team’s offseason workout program, which began on Monday, April 11.
For Lawrence, putting last season behind him was necessary, while still coming away with plenty of lessons about what to do and, especially, what not to do as his career moves forward. Refreshed and enjoying his first real offseason in years, Lawrence is ready to pick up where he left off, but this time a much improved NFL player, entering his second year after becoming the No. 1 overall pick in 2021.
The young QB didn’t want to dwell on the past too much, but certainly took some lessons from last season, he told the local media. For three weeks following the season, he took a typical break that an NFL player does without playing football, working out much or doing any of the standard things a football player would do during the season.
“I don’t like to dwell on the past,” he said. “Obviously, I like to learn from it. And I think I’m a big believer, everything happens for a reason. And you just got to figure out what that is and build on it and look at the positive.”
Though there weren’t many positives from last season, Lawrence was able to start and play in all 17 games last season, throwing the football 602 times, completing 359 of those attempts. He’d account for 3,641 passing yards while tossing 12 touchdowns and 17 interceptions.
Sure, it wasn’t always pretty, but those reps are valuable and something to build off of heading into his second season. As for his first season, at least what he and the rest of the team went through, there’s no one way to describe it other than distraction-riddled.
#Jaguars QB Trevor Lawrence when asked about last year, a word that describes it. Not much, but distraction is a good one. How the team can learn and grow from it:— Demetrius Harvey (@Demetrius82) April 14, 2022
Credit: https://t.co/fIdtZDPTvR pic.twitter.com/G6nOrZULVC
This year, though, should be different with everything moving in the “same direction,” Lawrence said.
“It’s tough, you know, stuff you can’t control all the time and you can only control how you respond, what your next move is all those things,” he noted. “I would say just learning that and kind of what this team went through last year, it’s going to help us I know for sure now more in a more stable environment.”
Lawrence understands that part of the process the team will go through will involve losing. Of course, he’d love it if the team went 17-0, but as he noted no team has done that, and that’s simply not a realistic expectation in the NFL.
But having the experience of losing five, six games in a row multiple times last year, though tough, can help you understand better how to progress and move forward after a loss.
“And having that so now we get a little rut, we lose a game, we might even lose two games in a row,” Lawrence began. “You know how to kind of get out of it, you know what’s in you and you know the people that are around you, and you’ve kind of been through it all with so I think that’ll help us.”
Now is the time to build on that, with fresh, new faces in the building along with those from last year who have weathered the storm. The Jaguars went out and signed a few key playmakers in receivers Christian Kirk and Zay Jones, along with tight end Evan Engram. Having players like that will help the offense and Lawrence move forward.
Lawrence and his receivers have already started throwing a little bit, able to utilize the facility now as part of the offseason program. That, of course, is without the coach's direction, something that will begin later in the offseason during phase 2. Still, gaining that familiarity will certainly go a long way.
Prior to the offseason program beginning, Lawrence spent time away after refreshing for three weeks. He was in Jacksonville for the better part of the past couple of months, but also trained in California for a week-and-a-half, two weeks in order to get back throwing, and training, while also enjoying some vacation time.
He spent time with the 3DQB crew in Huntington Beach (Calf.), who are comprised of a crew of QB coaches, including Adam Dedeaux, Tom House, John Beck and Taylor Kelly. The group has also worked with QBs such as Jarred Goff, Dak Prescott, Lamar Jackson, Matt Stafford and Carson Wentz to name a few.
Of course, Lawrence also has his own strength coach/nutritionist in Will Wynkoop, who was from Clemson, and now resides in Jacksonville with the young QB. But, being able to work on his throwing mechanics for some time this offseason was also important.
“Really just working on a lot of mechanics stuff when I was out in California, making some tweaks and just wanted to feel better with my arm, not use as much arm, kind of get everything synced up,” Lawrence said of his offseason process in training, mentioning that containing to drill those in, and of course, couple it with strength training keeps him fresh, flexible, and most importantly, healthy.
“I was fortunate to be healthy which is an accomplishment. Play 17 games and adjustment from college and get through the season healthy, I’m thankful for that but just trying to make sure I can do that again and just be sustained and make sure my body is good and I feel great.”
Now, Lawrence and the rest of the team will continue trying to adjust and build off of the offseason with a renewed focus, and a fresh vision from Pederson. Pederson is a coach that has played the same position as Lawrence and has won Super Bowls, once as a player and once as a coach. That helps a lot.
“Having someone that’s done it and knows how to do it, helps a lot and gives us a lot of confidence,” he said. “So far it’s been great to see kind of how he runs things. really laid back expects a lot out of us, obviously, I think that’s important that you have those high expectations for your team but, I think he handles things the right way.”
Soon, we will figure out if that’s the case, and whether or not all of the rebuilding the team has done will lead to success in the future, for Lawrence or otherwise.