It was reported earlier Wednesday morning that Zach Orr had decided to come back to football after a brief retirement. He retired early January due to a neck problem that doctors claimed was due to a birth defect. Orr could be a huge bargain for whoever signs him. The 24 year old linebacker led the Ravens in tackles last year with 130, accumulated 3 interceptions and had one forced fumble. He also made the AP 2nd team All-Pro list.
Zach Orr was phenomenal against the run. He had the 7th-best run stop percentage among LBs in 2017, according to Pro Football Focus. Any teams that adds Orr would see an immediate improvement in run defense. Although he struggled in the pass defense, he may not have reached his ceiling, considering he's only 24 years young. Last year he played inside linebacker in a 3-4 defense and was part of a stacked LB core including other highly touted inside backer C.J. Mosley. What does this mean for a team that runs a traditional 4-3? Remember that there's a variety of of different 4-3 schemes. Some coaches use more of an attacking mike that attacks holes on a big percent of plays. Some play the mike more conservative and have them drop back in coverage most of the plays (excluding obvious runs). I would think that Orr would be more comfortable playing in that aggressive attacking mike position.
What does it mean for the Jaguars if they were interested in signing Zach Orr? Well first of all, you have to look at the core. At the moment the projected LB lineup is Telvin Smith at weak side, Myles Jack at the middle backer, and Paul Posluszny at strong side. The popular consensus would be replacing Posluszny with Orr and let him roam as the sam. My belief is Wash and Marrone aren't a 100% on the strong side considering Poz has never played the position before.
My only problem with adding Orr would be to have this neck issue popping up again. That being said, it is rare to have a player of his caliber to be available especially with his age and I would definitely go after Orr and bring him to stack the talented D even more. He may not be a pure fit in terms of strong side linebacker but Orr is a talented player that would make the Jaguars a better team.
Zach Orr is receiving a bunch of interest already. He's scheduled to meet up with Detroit on Thursday and several other teams have already reached out. Zach announced his decision to return to football on NFL Network’s Good Morning Football. The Jaguars still have a ton of money to spend, but should they be saving it for expiring contracts?
Do you think The Jags should kick the tires on Orr? Let us know what you think down below.