The Jacksonville Jaguars struggling defense is going to be missing another starter for at least two weeks.
Jaguars head coach Mike Mularkey said on Wednesday that starting free safety Dwight Lowery has already been ruled out for the team’s next game against the Oakland Raiders after the bye week with an ankle injury that he suffered in the second half of this past Sunday’s 41-3 loss to the Chicago Bears.
In Lowery’s absence, the Jaguars will start second-year safety Chris Prosinski.
Prosinski was drafted in the fourth round of the 2011 NFL Draft as a safety out of Wyoming who had a lot of speed. So far Prosinski has played predominantly on special teams, but has not performed well when called upon to play on defense.
This season, the Jaguars have used Prosinski in three safety sets and he has stood out in a bad way by blowing coverage assignments and missing tackles.
Not all news is bad for the Jaguars defense, however.
Linebacker Daryl Smith (groin) was practicing on the side during the Jaguars final bye week practice on Wednesday. Mularkey will determine next Monday if he is ready to return to practicing with the team, a major step towards him finally returning to the field.
Smith has missed all five of the Jaguars games so far this season, and his absence is one of the factors contributing to the defenses struggles this season.
In other injury news, Jaguars wide receiver Laurent Robinson was not at practice on Wednesday because he has yet to pass his concussion test and has not yet been cleared to return. His status will be evaluated again after the bye.