2014 DRAFT GUIDE
Jaguars giving several undrafted rookies a chance

By MARK LONG - AP Sports Writer
    2013-05-05 17:00

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) - When Georgia defensive tackle Abry Jones realized he wasn't getting drafted, he started looking around the NFL at potential landing spots as a free agent.

Jacksonville stood out, and not just because it was close to home.

The Warner Robins, Ga., native saw a new general manager, a new head coach and a gutted roster that surely would lead to open competition at nearly every position.

``It's a great place for rookies,'' Jones said Sunday.

No doubt. The rebuilding Jaguars expect to open the season with 12 to 15 rookies, maybe even more.

Most starters already have been penciled in. But several positions, including just about every backup spot, are up for grabs. That put a little extra emphasis on the team's three-day rookie minicamp that ended Sunday.

A handful of undrafted rookies stood out, including fullback Lonnie Pryor, linebacker LaRoy Reynolds, tight end Ryan Otten, offensive tackle R.J. Dill, receiver Tobais Palmer, running back De'Leon Eskridge and defensive ends Paul Hazel and J.D. Griggs.

Eskridge and Griggs attended the camp on a tryout basis and could sign with the team Monday.

``I enjoyed every moment,'' Eskridge said. ``It's a good opportunity.''

None of those guys got as much attention as Jacksonville's draft picks. First-rounder Luke Joeckel, second-round safety Johnathan Cyprien and former Michigan quarterback Denard Robinson drew the most interest.

But when Caldwell and coach Gus Bradley are filling out the 53-man roster in September, undrafted players are sure to be in the mix for the final spots.

``I really had a tough time initially with the NFL because there's a sense of disloyalty,'' Bradley said. ``They're here and then you cut them. When I first started out, that was new to me. I didn't know if I liked that part because in college you recruited them and you grow with them through the whole thing.

``The way I've been able to deal with it is this: I've told them the loyalty comes with us coaching every one of you as hard as we can.''

Still, the opportunities are obvious.

Jaguars owner Shad Khan fired general manager Gene Smith, the architect of the roster the last four years, after the worst season in franchise history.

Caldwell took over in January and started making changes.

The Jaguars parted ways with about two dozen veterans, including three-fourths of their starting secondary, a starting linebacker, a starting defensive tackle, a starting fullback, a backup running back, a backup tight end and a few receivers.

``I felt like if I had to go anywhere to get a starting position, this would be the best route for me to go,'' said Pryor, whose interest in Jacksonville grew after longtime Jaguars fullback Greg Jones signed with Houston. ``This franchise has gone through a lot of changes and probably will have more.''

Running back Maurice Jones-Drew, linebacker Paul Posluszny, tight end Marcedes Lewis, defensive end Jeremy Mincey, receiver Cecil Shorts III, safety Dwight Lowery, place-kicker Josh Scobee, punter Bryan Anger and offensive linemen Eugene Monroe, Uche Nwaneri, Brad Meester and Will Rackley are among those considered safe.

Jacksonville also seems committed to the six veterans signed in free agency.

Even quarterbacks Blaine Gabbert and Chad Henne seem immune to the overhaul for now.

But that didn't prevent former Arizona quarterback Matt Scott and former Vanderbilt quarterback Jordan Rodgers from signing as undrafted rookies.

``It's a good position for a quarterback to be,'' Scott said. ``They're going to have open competition, so we'll see how it goes.''

Scott (ankle) and Rodgers (groin) sat out Sunday's practice, but both expect to be ready when the Jaguars begin organized team activities May 13.

And just like the other 30-plus rookies on Jacksonville's roster, they all have a chance.

``They sense it,'' Bradley said. ``That was one of the reasons why it was a good free agency group for us - because they knew the opportunity.''

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

David WilsonJul 31 12:01p

New York Giants RB David Wilson (neck) 'needs a miracle' from his surgeon's evaluation to be able to continue his playing career, according to a source.

David WilsonJul 31 11:52a

New York Giants RB David Wilson (neck) attended team meetings Thursday, July 31, and appeared ready to go, according to RB Rashad Jennings.

Brent UrbanJul 31 11:42a

Baltimore Ravens DE Brent Urban (knee) suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament during practice Wednesday, July 30, and will miss the entire 2014 season.

Lance LouisJul 31 11:32a

Indianapolis Colts OG Jack Mewhort appears to be the leading candidate for the starting left guard job. OG Lance Louis is also considered a candidate for the job.

Donald ThomasJul 31 11:22a

Indianapolis Colts OG Donald Thomas (quadriceps) is scheduled to undergo season-ending quadriceps surgery and will be placed on the Reserve/Injured list, according to head coach Chuck Pagano.

Nick BarnettJul 31 11:12a

Free-agent LB Nick Barnett (Redskins) is still an option for the Atlanta Falcons depending on what happens with the team's linebackers. The Falcons worked out Barnett in June but did not sign him.

Josh GordonJul 31 10:42a

Cleveland Browns WR Josh Gordon is not practicing Thursday, July 31, and presumably will miss practice Friday, Aug. 1, to attend his suspension appeal hearing.

Eric BerryJul 31 10:32a

Kansas City Chiefs SS Eric Berry (leg, foot) was carted off at practice Thursday, July 31, with a right leg or foot injury. SS Jerron McMillian has taken his place.

Jordan TodmanJul 31 09:52a

Jacksonville Jaguars RB Toby Gerhart is expected to be spelled by RBs Jordan Todman, Denard Robinson and Storm Johnson so he doesn't reach the 300-carry plateau.

Morgan BurnettJul 31 09:42a

Green Bay Packers FS Morgan Burnett (ankle) and SS Tanner Miller (undisclosed) are not practicing Thursday, July 31.

Micah HydeJul 31 09:42a

Green Bay Packers FS Ha Ha Clinton-Dix is working with the first-team defense at strong safety beside FS Micah Hyde Thursday, July 31.

Lardarius WebbJul 31 09:23a

Baltimore Ravens CB Lardarius Webb (back), DE Brent Urban (knee), DT Timmy Jernigan (back), OG Will Rackley (concussion) and WR Jeremy Butler (undisclosed) are out of practice Thursday, July [ More ]

Terrell SuggsJul 31 09:03a

Baltimore Ravens LB Terrell Suggs, DT Haloti Ngata and LB Daryl Smith are not practicing Thursday, July 31.

Nate GarnerJul 31 08:53a

Miami Dolphins C Nate Garner is working with the first-team offense again Thursday, July 31, over C Shelley Smith.

A.J. HawkJul 31 01:53a

Green Bay Packers LB Brad Jones has been working ahead of LB A.J. Hawk as the lone linebacker in the dime defense in practice.

Matt CasselJul 31 01:53a

Minnesota Vikings QB Teddy Bridgewater saw reps with the first-team offense in practice Wednesday, July 30. According to NFL Network's Albert Breer, QB Matt Cassel appears to lead the [ More ]

Christian PonderJul 31 01:53a

Minnesota Vikings QB Christian Ponder's reps were cut during practice Wednesday, July 30.

Josh GordonJul 30 11:43p

Cleveland Browns WR Josh Gordon is in Stage III of the NFL's substance-abuse program, and a positive test automatically triggers a one-year suspension. For Gordon, only two options exist: [ More ]

Rod StreaterJul 30 11:43p

Oakland Raiders WR Rod Streater (concussion) participated in warmups and drills Wednesday, July 30, but he sat out team sessions. Streater suffered a concussion Monday, July 28, and has [ More ]

Joique BellJul 30 10:23p

Detroit Lions RB Joique Bell (knee) missed organized team activities (OTAs) and minicamp while recovering from a knee injury, but he looked good cutting and accelerating with ease during [ More ]

Rob SimsJul 30 10:23p

Detroit Lions OG Rob Sims (knee) missed organized team activities (OTAs) and minicamp while recovering from a knee injury, but he held his own working against DT Nick Fairley [ More ]

Allen RobinsonJul 30 10:13p

Updating a previous report, Jacksonville Jaguars WR Allen Robinson (and fellow rookie WR Marqise Lee) have seen plenty of opportunity at training camp with WR Cecil Shorts (hamstring) and [ More ]

Marqise LeeJul 30 10:13p

Jacksonville Jaguars WR Marqise Lee (and fellow rookie WR Allen Robinson) have seen more reps in training camp with WR Cecil Shorts (hamstring) and WR Ace Sanders (personal) sidelined. [ More ]

Carl NicksJul 30 08:03p

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers officially released OG Carl Nicks (toe) Wednesday, July 30, with an injury settlement.

David WilsonJul 30 06:43p

New York Giants RB David Wilson (neck) tweeted that he is fine after leaving practice early Tuesday, July 29. Wilson said he passed all physical examinations and will find out more Monday, Aug. 3.

Jim LeonhardJul 30 05:53p

The Cleveland Browns signed SS Jim Leonhard (Bills) Wednesday, July 30. Terms of the contract were not disclosed.

Aldon SmithJul 30 04:43p

San Francisco 49ers LB Aldon Smith is not participating in practice Wednesday, July 30, as he attends a hearing at the Los Angeles City Attorney's office regarding an April [ More ]

Fred JacksonJul 30 04:13p

The Buffalo Bills have signed RB Fred Jackson to a one-year contract extension. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Jason GarrettJul 30 03:23p

Updating a previous report, Dallas Cowboys DE Demarcus Lawrence (foot) will undergo surgery for a broken foot Thursday, July 31, according to head coach Jason Garrett.

LaMichael JamesJul 30 03:03p

San Francisco 49ers RB LaMichael James (elbow) will wear a brace on his dislocated elbow and should be ready for the start of the regular season, according to head coach Jim Harbaugh.

Brent UrbanJul 30 02:23p

Baltimore Ravens DE Brent Urban (leg) and DT Timmy Jernigan (back) appear to have suffered injuries during practice Wednesday, July 30. Urban was helped off the field after suffering the injury.

Tyron SmithJul 30 02:03p

Dallas Cowboys OT Tyron Smith has agreed to terms with the team on an eight-year contract extension worth $98 million, according to a source.

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2014 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group