Jacksonville Jaguars Latest 2011 NFL Free Agency News

August 1, 2011 by

The Jacksonville Jaguars haven’t been the most active team in this 2011 NFL Free Agency frenzy period, but they’ve been pretty close.  The league year opened its highly-anticipated doors on Tuesday, July 26th, and it’s safe to say the Jaguars have made noise every step of the way. 

On the first day following the end of the lockout, Jacksonville added a count of 24 undrafted free agents to its roster. 

Before you knew it, a report came out that the Jaguars were stealing away star safety Eric Weddle to supercharge the secondary from the San Diego Chargers, but it was later declared erroneous and the Bolts got him in the end. 

However, the team did manage to land one of the best players on the open market, let alone the linebacker position in Paul Posluszny.  The overhaul at the position was completed with the addition of Clint Session, who’s not the first linebacker to jump ship from Indianapolis to Jacksonville… Mike Peterson did it, too.  As a result, Justin Durant took his talents to Detroit and was later joined by Stephen Tulloch. 

Mixed feelings came to the surface Friday morning.  Clearing cap space for an upgrade at safety, the Jaguars released guard Vince Manuwai and said good riddance to defensive end Derrick Harvey. 


Expectations & Player Profiles

Derrick Harvey Bio: Derrick Harvey was selected 8th overall in the 2008 NFL Draft.  The 6-5, 268-pound 24-year-old defensive end wasn’t easy to come by.  The Jags forked over four picks to acquire the former Florida Gator and certifiable bust (26th overall pick, two third-round-picks and a fourth-round selection).  In three seasons in Jacksonville, Harvey started 32 games and had 88 total tackles, eight sacks and one interception.

Gregg Rosenthal of ProFootballTalk described the move as “One of the worst NFL trades of the last five years.” 

It’s just my guess, but I have a feeling he won’t be finding a new home very soon—at least not in a starting role. 

The most recent news over the weekend came when the team’s former No. 1 receiver Mike Sims-Walker signed a new deal with the St. Louis Rams and Marcedes Lewis decided to roll up his sleeves and report to camp and end his holdout. 

Marcedes Lewis Bio: Chosen 28th overall in the 2006 NFL Draft, Marcedes Lewis, 27, has had a profound impact on the Jacksonville offense.  The 6-6, 275-pound star tight end played college at UCLA and is living up to his first-round status.  Since the 2007 season, Lewis has missed only one start and comes off a career-high in receptions (58), yards (700) and touchdowns (10) in 2010. 

His highest totals for a single season before last year were 41 catches (’08), 518 yards (’09) and two touchdowns (’07, ’08 and ’09).  Career Stats: 181 receptions, 2,224 receiving yards, 12.3 average per catch, 3 fumbles and 17 touchdowns. 

The best is still ahead of him in my opinion, but Lewis will need additional help in the aerial attack for sure. 

Paul Posluszny Bio: Paul Posluszny crossed into new territory last season, not only topping 100 combined tackles for the third straight season, but also racking up over 150 with 151.  The 6-1, 238-pound middle linebacker was an underrated star with the Buffalo Bills and looks to shine even more in his new home.  Also recognized as “Poz,” the 26-year-old was selected 34th overall in the 2007 NFL Draft and played college at Penn State.  Career Stats: 398 combined tackles, three sacks, four interceptions and four forced fumbles.

Look for Posluszny and Session to provide one of the better linebacker duos in the league.

Earlier last month I projected a pre-free agency season record of 4-12 to 5-11 for the Jaguars upcoming season.  The AFC South is open.  If Jacksonville can continue some upgrades on the defensive line, in the secondary (most notably at safety) and wide receiver, the team might have a chance after all. 

Follow Gridiron Grit and Michael Gartman on Twitter. 

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    3 Responses to “Jacksonville Jaguars Latest 2011 NFL Free Agency News”
    • George Smith says:

      The Jags were smart to improve their linebacker situation. That has been a major weakness for them over the years.

    • I was surprised that Jacksonville made such a big splash, but they certainly needed to, especially at linebacker. Thanks for the comment, George.

    • eric g says:

      Just found your website from the NYT link. Looks great, even as a Jag fan I found the 2011 preview pretty fair. Look for them to overachieve this year, the defense last year was terrible, and they looked much better friday night

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