Here is a position-by-position look at who goes, who stays when the Jacksonville Jaguars make their final cuts.
Stephen Morris appears to be headed back to the practice squad since the Jaguars cut Jeff Tuel in the first round of cuts.
RUNNING BACK (5)
The Jaguars are going without a fullback in 2015. Yeldon should eventually win the starting job but the carries will be spread out pretty well with Gerhart and Robinson early in the season. The Jaguars will run more inside zone, which is a good fit for Gerhart and means he’s going to get a lot of work. Robinson fits in nicely as a change-of-pace back and receiver out of the backfield. Grant gets the last spot, especially after his performance against Washington on Thursday, over second-year player Storm Johnson.
WIDE RECEIVER (5)
Robinson is clearly the Jaguars’ No. 1 receiver, and right now the No. 2 spot would belong to Hurns since Lee hasn’t practiced since the fifth day of training camp because of a hamstring pull. That seems to be frustrating offensive coordinator Greg Olson, who last week compared Lee to an albino tiger at the zoo: You feel lucky to see them. Greene will handle punt-return duties.
TIGHT END (4)
The tight end will be featured heavily in Olson’s offense and expect to see a lot of two-tight end formations even with Thomas out for at least the first three weeks as he recovers from hand surgery. When healthy, Thomas has been a beast in the red zone the past two seasons (17 TD catches). Lewis has missed 13 games the past two seasons but Bradley said this is his best camp in the three seasons he’s been around and Lewis said it’s the best he’s felt since 2011.
OFFENSIVE LINEMEN (9)
Wisniewski edged out Bowanko for the starting center spot and the Jaguars are having Bowanko work at guard and tackle as well. Pasztor, who has started 20 games at right tackle the past two seasons, has been moved inside to guard. That makes him a valuable reserve because he can play both spots. This unit is under a lot of pressure to be better than it has been the past several seasons and there are some inside the organization who believe that offensive line coach Doug Marrone was the most important offseason acquisition.
DEFENSIVE LINE (11)
Both Marks and Branch are injured and Marks could start the season on the physically unable to perform list as he continues to rehab the torn right ACL that he suffered in the 2014 finale. Branch is going to miss significant time with a sprained MCL. He is entering the final year of his rookie contract and needs to make an impact in 2015. The former second-round pick has just 10 sacks in 38 games. Smith had a great camp and will get work on first and second down at the Leo (pass-rushing end) with Clemons coming in on third downs. Davis will get some work on first and second down, too, even though he’s most effective as an interior rusher in the team’s third-down package. Hood will start in Marks’ place. Bennett also plays the same spot (3-technique defensive tackle) and the Jaguars are pleased with his improvement as a rusher.
Reynolds’ MCL sprain complicates things. There isn’t yet a timetable for when he might return, but he’s a key part of the Jaguars’ special teams so I don’t see them putting him on short-term IR if they can avoid it. But if he’s going to be out for a significant amount of time, the team also could keep Jeremiah George. Armbrister, an undrafted rookie out of Miami, was noticeable during OTAs and minicamp and followed that up with a good camp and preseason. If the Jaguars do keep six linebackers then they’d have to trim from another spot. Possibly the defensive line.
Colvin and House appear to be the starters, with Colvin moving inside and McCray lining up outside when the Jaguars are in nickel. The last spot was a battle between Reynolds, Nick Marshall and Jeremy Harris. Marshall has been better in practice than games and Harris had a hard time against the Redskins.
Loston makes the roster over Josh Evans, who has started 25 games in the past two seasons at free safety. The Jaguars moved him to strong safety after signing Brown and drafting Sample. Loston, however, made a lot of plays during OTAs and minicamp and had a better preseason. He played in 13 games last season on special teams.
I certainly didn’t expect to see Myers’ name here over Josh Scobee when camp began, but the Jaguars are going with the rookie after trading Scobee to Pittsburgh.