In 2018 the Jaguars have been better represented in offseason lists than during any other time in franchise history. From the Pro Bowl, to All-Pro teams, to the NFL Top 100, the Jaguars have seen many of their stars featured.
On Monday ESPN released their annual NFL Under-25 Starting Lineup. While the opinions of ESPN's NFL insiders have zero effect on what happens on the field, it still brings joy to fanbases nation wide to see their young stars featured on this list. The Jaguars had two players land in the lineup. The argument could made that there were other deserving players on the Jaguars roster, but for now let's look at who did make it for the Jaguars.
Jalen Ramsey, of course, is featured on this list. At just 23 years old he's the highest rated CB in Madden 19, a Pro Bowler, a 1st Team All-Pro, and the swaggiest player at his position in the NFL. His rare combination of size, speed, length, leaping ability and his penchant for trash talk has vaulted him to star status - something rarely achieved by players donning the black and teal of the Jaguars. As long as Ramsey stays healthy he'll be on countless more lists, including this one next year and the year after.
The second young gun to make the starting lineup for the Jaguars is Myles Jack. Jack did little to prove his worth on the field during his rookie season in 2016, but that's not on him - the coaching staff failed to get him on the field time and time again throughout the 2016 campaign. In 2017, however Jack showed why he was considered a top five talent in his draft class. He's the freakiest athlete at the linebacker position in the NFL. He can cover WRs, TEs and RBs out of the backfield. He can get sideline to sideline faster than anyone at his position and has a nose for the ball. Unlike Ramsey, however, Jack has a long way to go as a linebacker. He's still mastering the mental side of the game and has to learn to play within himself. At times it seems like he's too athletic. But at just 22 years old the sky is the limit for "the man who wasn't down"!
There's is one player who was, without a doubt, snubbed by the makers of this starting lineup. Yannick Ngakoue, 23 years old, led the NFL in strip sacks last season and recorded 20 sacks during his first two years in the league. Heck, he even scored a touch down last year. There wasn't a single player who wrecked more games at his position than did Ngakoue in 2017, yet he does not appear in ESPN's starting lineup. Joey Bosa, Myles Garrett, and TJ Watt made it into the lineup as pass rushers ahead of Ngakoue. While Joey Bosa should certainly be on the list, there's little question that Ngakoue has proven much more on the field than either Myles Garrett or TJ Watt, who both recorded just 7 sacks in 2017.
Some may say that Fournette deserves to be on this list, but there's several young RBs, including Zeke Elliot, Kareem Hunt, and Alvin Kamara, who have shown more to this point in their respective careers.
If I had to pick one Jaguars player who I think will be on this list next year that wasn't on it this year it would be Cam Robinson. Despite dealing with injuries during his rookie campaign in 2017, the young left tackle showed promise. With his elite skill set at the position, Cam Robinson could easily vault his way into ESPN's starting lineup next year.
What do you think about ESPN's list? Let us know in the comments below.
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