JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- It doesn't matter to Jacksonville Jaguars rookie cornerback Jalen Ramsey that Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers is a five-time Pro Bowler, two-time MVP, and probably headed to the Hall of Fame.
Ramsey says he is ready for that kind of challenge in his first game as a professional. In fact, he hopes the Packers decide to throw his way Sunday at EverBank Field. A lot.
"I'm not scared," Ramsey said. "Throw my way if you want to."
The fifth overall pick certainly isn't caught up in the I-can't-believe-I'm-playing-against-so-and-so moment that sometimes affects rookies. But playing against Rodgers, Nelson and Cobb will definitely be a pretty strong "Welcome to the NFL" moment for Ramsey.
Rodgers is regarded by some as the best quarterback in the game right now. Green Bay's offense has been one of the most productive in the NFL over the past five seasons, ranking second in the NFL in points per game (27.6), 30-point games (40), and 40-point games (15).
Trying to defend the Packers' passing game is tough for veteran defensive backs. The Jaguars are encouraged by Ramsey's play in the preseason -- especially his work against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers -- and there isn't any concern that he won't be able to handle himself.
"Jalen is a good player for us and has done some good things from what we have seen thus far," Jaguars coach Gus Bradley said. "He just needs to carry it over into the regular season, a heightened environment.
"He is a good football player. Jalen, I know, will stand up to the competition."
The Jaguars have had one of the worst pass defenses in the NFL over the past three seasons, giving up 82 touchdown passes, allowing quarterbacks to complete 64.9 percent of their passes and recording a league-low 26 interceptions. The Jaguars drafted the 6-foot-1, 211-pound Ramsey to help improve those numbers.
That begins Sunday with Rodgers, Cobb and Nelson. Ramsey doesn't see dealing with those three as a bigger challenge than dealing with any other trio around the league.
"I've been preparing like I would prepare for anyone else," Ramsey said. "We'll see on Sunday. Like I said, they're a really good team. We know that. Everybody knows that so hopefully it'll be a good game and we can go out there and do well."
For just a quick moment, Ramsey admitted that it would be neat to pick off Rodgers, but not because it's Rodgers.
"It'd mean a lot to me,” he said. "It'll be my first NFL interception but that's not really what I'm focused on right now. I'm just focused on doing what I can do for the team."