September 22nd, 2021 at 11:20am CST by Zachary Links
The Jaguars are signing Nevin Lawson (Twitter link via NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport). It’s a one-year deal for the veteran cornerback, just days after his release from the Raiders.
The Raiders figured they could re-sign Lawson to the practice squad, but the Jaguars quickly spoiled their plans. Now, Lawson is set to dress for this week’s game against the Cardinals. The Jags are banged up in the secondary, with Tre Herndon (knee) and C.J. Henderson (hip flexor and groin) nursing injuries.
This’ll mark Lawson’s first live action of 2021 after serving a two-game suspension to open the year. The Raiders could have activated him for Sunday’s game against the Dolphins, but they chose to drop him instead. There’s reason to believe that Lawson can be a solid contributor to someone’s secondary — he started in nine of his 14 games last year and tallied 61 tackles, four passes defensed, two forced fumbles, and a sack.
If signed, the 30-year-old could dress for this week’s game against the Cardials. As of this writing, the Jaguars’ have Tre Herndon, Shaquill Griffin, and Chris Claybrooks, second-rounder Tyson Campbell, and former first-rounder C.J. Henderson on the roster.
September 21st, 2021 at 11:16am CST by Zachary Links
Cornerback Nevin Lawson will visit the Jaguars today (Twitter link via NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport). If all goes well, Lawson could find work just 24 hours after being released by the Raiders.
The Raiders dropped Lawson on Monday with hopes of re-signing him to the practice squad. That won’t happen if Lawson lands a suitable 53-man roster deal in Jacksonville.
Lawson has yet to make his 2021 debut, thanks to a two-game ban to open the season. The Raiders could have activated him for Sunday’s game against the Dolphins, but they chose to drop him instead. There’s reason to believe that Lawson can be a solid contributor to someone’s secondary — he started in nine of his 14 games last year and tallied 61 tackles, four passes defensed, two forced fumbles, and a sack.
September 20th, 2021 at 10:14am CST by Zachary Links
Jaguars tight end James O’Shaughnessy will miss 3-to-4 weeks with an ankle sprain (Twitter link via Doug Kyed of Pro Football Focus). That timeline could make him a candidate for the short-term injured reserve list, but the Jags will wait for more on his condition before making any decisions.
It’s unfortunate timing for O’Shaughnessy, who has been a bright spot through two trying weeks for the Jaguars. In Week 1, the veteran caught six passes for 48 yards, good for second on the team in catches. Then, on Sunday, he had an early 24-yard grab against the Broncos before being forced out. The Broncos went on to beat the Jaguars 23-13, putting Urban Meyer & Co. at 0-2.
The Jalen Ramsey saga in Jacksonville started in earnest on this date in 2019. On September 16, 2019, the Jaguars star cornerback requested a trade.
Before we discuss the trade demand, let’s review a bit. The fifth-overall selection in the 2016 draft quickly emerged as a star in Jacksonville. Following a rookie campaign that saw him earn PFWA All-Rookie Team honors, Ramsey took it to another level in 2017, earning a first-team All-Pro nod after finishing with 63 tackles, 17 passes defended, and four interceptions. Ramsey made his second-straight Pro Bowl in 2018, cementing himself as one of the league’s top defensive backs.
However, things weren’t especially rosy in Jacksonville. First, there was the 2018 team-imposed suspension. Then, following that 2018 campaign, the two sides started firing shots regarding an extension; Ramsey said he wanted a new deal, the Jaguars said “nah, not right now,” and then Ramsey warned that he wasn’t going to give any future discounts. While the cornerback was locked in through 2020 after the Jaguars picked up his fifth-year option, the cornerback started floating out potential suitors as early as August 2019.
Then came the bombshell. On September 16, 2019, Ramsey officially requested a trade from the Jaguars. While the defensive back was still upset about his lack of an extension, he apparently focused his anger on the coaching staff. Tensions reportedly boiled over between Ramsey and head coach Doug Marrone, as the player wanted to play man-to-man vs. the Jaguars’ preferred zone scheme. So, with Ramsey playing in an undesirable system on a rookie contract, he decided to ask out.
It sounded like a trade wouldn’t take too long to pull off. The Jaguars were open to trading their star defensive back, although they were requesting a bounty in return. A number of teams were naturally connected to Ramsey, with one report literally indicating that every team was interested.
There was little progress the week following the trade request. And there was little progress after that. At one point, Jaguars owner Shad Khan revealed that he was willing to give Ramsey a record-breaking contract, which was either a last-ditch effort to keep the player in Jacksonville or a last-ditch effort to save face. Ramsey temporarily continued playing for Jacksonville, but he eventually left the team to attend the birth of his daughter. Ramsey wouldn’t play for the Jaguars again. The team continued to hold out hope that Ramsey would change his mind, and the cornerback did eventually return to practice, but the organization finally found a trade partner for the disgruntled star.
On October 15, almost a month following the request, the Jaguars shipped Ramsey to the Rams. In exchange, Jacksonville received a 2020 first-round pick, a 2021 first-round pick, and a 2021 fourth-round pick.
Things ended up working out for Ramsey. He eventually got a hefty five-year, $105MM extension ($71.2MM guaranteed) from the Rams, and he earned a Pro Bowl nod and a first-team All-Pro selection during his first full season in Los Angeles.
It remains to be seen if the deal will work out for the Jaguars. 2020 first-round pick K’Lavon Chaisson had an underwhelming rookie campaign while 2021 first-round pick Travis Etienne will miss his entire rookie season thanks to injury. The front office used that fourth-round pick in a trade that netted the draft picks that turned into defensive end Jordan Smith and wideout Jalen Camp (who’s already been waived).
At one point in time, it looked like Ramsey could go down as one of the best players in Jaguars history. However, the cornerback drastically changed the course of his career on this day in 2019.
A former third-round pick, Johnson landed a midlevel extension with the Browns. The team traded its longtime outlet option to Houston during John Dorsey‘s GM tenure, which featured the Browns landing ex-rushing champion Kareem Hunt to pair with Nick Chubb, and Johnson played two seasons with the Texans. With the Texans changing regimes this offseason, Johnson ended up being released in February.
The former Miami Hurricane began his career with five straight seasons of 400-plus receiving yards, topping out at 693 for the 2017 Browns, despite having started just 12 games in that span.
September 16th, 2021 at 4:46pm CST by Sam Robinson
Although Urban Meyer attempted to slam the door on a quick NFL exit for the USC job, his start with the Jaguars has not gone especially smoothly. Rumors of discord in Jacksonville have surfaced months into Meyer’s tenure.
A number of red flags emerged during the offseason about Meyer’s transition from the college game to the NFL, according to CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora, who reports the rookie Jags HC’s temper has caused “repeated issues.” Meyer threatening coaches’ jobs has already led to unease among the staff, La Canfora adds, noting the three-time national championship-winning coach’s reactions to preseason losses struck many as bizarre.
This report emerged before the Jaguars’ 16-point loss to the Texans in Week 1. In March, Meyer certainly indicated he was onboard with steering a rebuild. It appears his demeanor early in the process has irked many in the building, which is interesting since the accomplished HC obviously put together the staff. While this might not be cause for alarm just yet, the Jags’ initial game effort left much to be desired.
The Jaguars have ex-49ers GM Trent Baalke in a GM role, but Meyer is running the show in his first year. That personnel power and the team being in position to draft Trevor Lawrence helped convince the Fox analyst to give the NFL a try. Meyer, 56, has run into a few issues along the way. After Meyer’s hire of Chris Doyle as director of sports performance led to a fierce backlash, leading to Doyle’s quick resignation, the NFL fined both the organization and Meyer for violating NFL OTA protocols. Meyer seeking to approach preseason games like regular-season contests also created issues, La Canfora adds.
Meyer’s personnel moves have brought some internal concerns as well, per JLC, and his using the franchise tag on left tackle Cam Robinson and essentially entrusting the O-line from last year’s 1-15 team to protect Lawrence surprised many around the league. All five Jags O-line starters returned from last season, which contrasts from the team’s changes at many other position groups.
The Jags have certainly invested plenty in Meyer, who is overseeing the development of the highest-profile quarterback in franchise history. It will be interesting to see if this situation stabilizes in the coming weeks and months.
September 15th, 2021 at 11:16am CST by Zachary Links
After the firing of Clay Helton, USC is on the lookout for a new head coach. It won’t be Urban Meyer, according the recently-minted Jaguars head coach.
“There’s no chance. I’m here and committed to trying to build an organization,” Meyer said (Twitter link via NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport).
Meyer made the long-anticipated jump to the pros in January, inking a lucrative long-term deal with the Jaguars. The news was met with mixed reactions and a few raised eyebrows, chiefly from those who wondered if he’d go back to college like other well-known NCAA coaches before him.
“Zero chance at that happening,” Meyer said in March. “What coach [Nick] Saban went through, I don’t know. That’s Coach Saban’s business. I’m not quite sure. At some point, I might talk to him about it…he’s a friend of mine and I got great respect for him.
“It is different. It’s completely different. My mind is set. There’s gonna be some losses. That’s gonna be miserable. I hate losing. We all do. But the reality is that you’re gonna lose. Hopefully you win more than you lose. But that’s something that’s gonna be new to me. I have to get my mind right and I’m working on that.”
The Jaguars did in fact start their season with a loss, falling 37-21 to the Texans. Meyer & Co. will look to get to .500 on Sunday when they take on the Broncos in Jacksonville.
The 49ers dropped Foster roughly three years ago and he was quickly claimed by Washington. However, the talented linebacker but never ended up using him. Foster suffered an ACL tear in 2019, further pushing his career off course. He also spent 2020 on IR. Between the suspensions and injuries, the 27-year-old has played just 16 total games as a pro.
Foster’s best on-the-field work came as a rookie in 2017, when Pro Football Focus graded him as a top-10 linebacker. Now said to be back at 100%, he’s also drawn interest from the Jets and former Niners coach Robert Saleh. If the Jaguars see him as a fit, he could become this week’s second high-profile signing, after running back Duke Johnsonagreed to join the 16-man practice squad.
All in all, Foster has registered 101 tackles and two passes defensed in 16 total NFL games.