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Jacksonville Jaguars

Takeaways From Jaguars Preseason Opener

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Rejoice ladies and gentleman, football season is back. After a slightly longer wait after the cancellation of the Hall Of Fame Game, NFL teams took the field for the first time Thursday Night.

The Jaguars traveled to MetLife Stadium to take on the New York Jets to open up the preseason for both teams. Here are a few notable things I saw from the Jaguars’ first action on the field:

Bortles looked sharp

There were questions whether Blake Bortles would or should play in the preseason opener. He did, and looked solid. Bortles played two series, and on both drives he drove the offense down the field and put up points. He went 6/7 for 105 yards, and the one incompletion was a catchable pass to Julius Thomas at the goal line on the opening drive.

Allen Robinson is on another level

Memo to cornerbacks guarding Robinson one on one this season: good luck.

Allen Robinson is quickly emerging as one of the best receivers in the league, and that was on full display Thursday night. Robinson worked this offseason improving his route-running and attacking jump balls, and the work he put in showed. He had 80 yards receiving on just three catches, and made two incredible plays back to back, as shown below:
[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uEZ73rsg1S4]
Robinson is showing that he is going to be a problem for defenses all season.

Marqise Lee shows a glimpse of his potential

I wrote on Marqise Lee during minicamp, and noted that if he could remain healthy for a full season, he could be a huge asset for the offense. He showed us some of the potential the team hopes to get out of him this season, making a nice grab over a defender along the sideline, and taking a pass on a short slant for 18 yards. In total he had 49 yards on four receptions.

Running game was effective

It is no secret that the Jaguars’ offensive line has a ton of question marks. With that, it was uncertain how effective the run game could really be this season. It was a great start however, against the Jets. The combination of Chris Ivory and TJ Yeldon was a solid one-two punch, and both had big gains against the Jets defense. The duo combined for 10 carries and 52 yards, and if they and the offensive line can provide a formidable rushing attack, it will provide an important balanced attack along with Bortles and the passing game.

Defense provided pressure regularly

While the numbers weren’t exactly there in terms of sacks, the defense did very well in providing constant pressure. It was evident early that Jags have some guys that can sufficiently get to the quarterback, when on the first Jets series of the game, rookie Yannick Ngakoue killed the drive with a sack, beating Ryan Clady to get to the quarterback.

Kickoff coverage has to get better

The kickoff coverage shown by the Jaguars Thursday night was unacceptable and must improve. Jacksonville gave up 51-yard and 84-yard returns against the Jets. They have to get that squared up before the start of the regular season.

Jacksonville Jaguars

Jaguars Owner Shad Khan Says Team Not Planning to Trade Jalen Ramsey

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Jalen Ramsey

Despite his demands and latest absence from the team, the Jacksonville Jaguars have no plans to trade All-Pro cornerback Jalen Ramsey, according to the Associated Press’ Mark Long.

Jaguars owner Shad Khan made it clear that trading Ramsey is not in the team’s plans, despite Ramsey’s desire to go elsewhere.

Ramsey formally requested a trade after the Jaguars Week 2 game.

“Obviously, football is a team sport and I’m sensitive to what individual insight or viewpoint or requests (there) might be” Khan said.

“But we have to do the right thing for the team. We value the values Jalen adds to us, to the Jaguars. I think we value him highly. We’re still looking at what is the right thing for the Jaguars, and I think right now the best thing is to have him be part of the team.”

While the Jaguars may not be willing to trade Ramsey, it hasn’t stopped teams from making offers.

“Obviously, we’re turning the season around and I think he can help the team,” Khan said.

According to CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora, the Jaguars rejected a deal consisting of two first-round draft picks.

According to Yahoo Sports’ Charles Robinson, Khan is considered to be a major hurdle for any deal as he prefers to keep Ramsey and ink him to a long-term contract as opposed to trading him away.

The Jaguars may not be figuring out a trade of Ramsey, but they sure need to figure out how to get the star corner back on the field.

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Jacksonville Jaguars

Jaguars’ Jalen Ramsey Requests Trade

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Jalen Ramsey

The Jacksonville Jaguars aren’t a team superstar cornerback Jalen Ramsey wants to play with anymore.

According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter and Chris Mortensen, Ramsey’s agent, David Mulugheta says that he has asked the Jaguars to trade the disgruntled Ramsey, and the team has had talks with teams and are asking for at least one first-round pick but would like more than that in return for the two-time Pro Bowl cornerback.

There are rumblings that a trade could happen as early as this week, citing the damage to the relationship between Ramsey and Jaguars head coach Doug Marrone who got into a very animated argument on the sidelines during Sunday’s game against the Houston Texans.

Sunday’s argument wasn’t the first incident involving Ramsey. He expressed his frustration with his role in the defense back in 2016, when he was a rookie, alongside teammates Tashaun Gipson and Davon House, with Ramsey advocating for a clean sweep of the defensive coaching staff.

Ramsey also criticized the defensive play calling during the fourth quarter of the 2017 AFC Championship game against the New England Patriots.

Ramsey has also said that he would not be giving the Jaguars a hometown discount in contract discussions, and even showed up to training camp in a Brinks truck.

Ramsey’s antics and attitude have boiled over in Jacksonville, and it is now time for the two sides to part ways.

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Green Bay Packers

Packers’ Aaron Rodgers Slams Colts’ Fans for Booing Andrew Luck

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aaron rodgers

Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers is speaking out against the fans who booed former Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck, following the stunning news of his retirement over the weekend.

“I thought it was pretty disgusting,” Rodgers said, according to ESPN’s Rob Demovsky.

“He’s making a really tough decision and then before that, he makes the decision, I don’t know why that doesn’t stay in house to kind of protect him a little bit. Although when I think about it, I thought it would’ve been more of a standing-ovation type thing and a thank you than boos.”

While Rodgers says he is a long way away from his own retirement, he respects Luck’s decision to call it a career, calling it “very selfless, not selfish.”

“I, 100 percent, respect him immensely for his decision” Rodgers said.

“I salute him for choosing quality of life. He’s a fantastic player, he had a great career and he’s got a lot to be proud of. Like many of us in this locker room, if not all of us, we all have interests outside of football. Andrew is an extremely bright guy, and I’m sure he’ll have a lot of things to transition into. I know what it’s like to deal with rehab and going through injuries. I’ve been on IR twice. It’s tough. He was on it pretty much for an entire season and next offseason trying to get his arm back. Again, in my opinion, not playing with him but just reading what his teammates said, tough guy. What he went through to get himself back on the field is what it means to be a leader and I’m excited for him.”

“I’m sure when you’re going through stuff where you’re not sure if you’re ever going to play again — like Andrew did, like (Washington Redskins quarterback) Alex Smith might be dealing with right now — I’m sure there’s some tough days because, at some point, you start thinking about your post-career life and ability to move and functions,” Rodgers said. “A lot of guys over the years have had to end their years because of injuries. Two of my favorite quarterbacks growing up, Steve Young and Troy Aikman, those are tough decision but I think they’re decisions in the interest of your life at 40 and 50 and 60 hopefully. Again, I give him a lot of credit for making that tough decision, and I think he did it with enough time and lets them move forward with Jacoby [Brissett] and figure out what they want to do with their roster.”

Rodgers has also spoken about his thoughts about his post-career health, after suffering three known concussions already during his NFL career.

“Of course, of course,” Rodgers said. “Anytime you’ve had a concussion or a couple of concussions, the following days you’re always thinking about what it’s going to be like, but I think with medicine the way it is and research the way it is, there’s going to be more and more things that can help guys down the line to feel better, hopefully. And hopefully, we can do our job in the [NFL Players Association] and continue to take care of former players.”

While Colts’ fans may be angry at Luck, Rodgers is showing him nothing but support and respect for making the tough decision.

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