The Jacksonville Jaguars have had a rough go of it over the past couple of weeks. Various media types, as well as commissioner Roger Goodell have theorized about the potential future of the franchise, with some saying with certainty that the Jaguars will end up playing full time as a London franchise in the next decade. I’m not going to speculate, but instead it’s time to talk about some good news.
The Jaguars went into the 2013 NFL draft with multiple needs on both sides of the football. A big need for the Jags is to fill one of their safety spots, and they believe they’ve done that with the 33rd pick in the draft, John Cyprien.
Cyprien is one of those players who illustrate the importance of the Senior Bowl and the impact it can have on a players’s draft status. Cyprien was considered by most experts a mid round pick, but it was based on limited film. Florida International games rarely make it out of regional coverage. I had a terabyte, give or take a few gigs of football games on my DVR from the past two seasons, and as I cleared it all off I had exactly four FIU games.
But the Senior Bowl put his name on the map and made him a very popular name among draftniks. He was able to parlay a big offseason into a high draft pick, and with Jaguars training camp approaching, has a chance to really impress. Looking over the Jaguars depth chart, Cyprien should have the inside track to start next to veteran safety Dwight Lowery at strong safety. This would be ideal for Cyprien and his skill set. He is a pure strong safety for the most part, able to play up close and make plays in the run game, or drop into that deep center field role.
I expect that during the course of the Jaguars training camp, Cyprien is going to spend most of his time working hard to learn the playbook, get comfortable with his new teammates and be sure that when the season starts he is fully acclimated to the Jaugars defense as a starter. Cyprien should be able to improve a Jaguars defense that was 30th in yards allowed and 29th in points allowed in 2012.