JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - The break between the offseason program and training camp offers players an opportunity to relax before the chaos in the months ahead.
However, for players looking to refine their technique or learn a new position, the break provides much-needed study time prior to the rigors of summer practices.
Jaguars linebacker Paul Posluszny took advantage of that second option this offseason. Entering his 11th season, Posluszny is being asked to switch from MIKE linebacker to SAM linebacker, a position he has never played before at the NFL level.
Posluszny was able to focus specifically on his new position while he was away from his teammates and coaches.
“Yeah, especially technique and fundamentals that I’m going to have to use now," Posluszny said. "Different spot, I was able to work on that exclusively, which is good. I had a lot of time to work on all of the small details that I’ll need to really be solid at now that it’s training camp.”
The veteran isn't competing with anyone in particular at the position. The Jaguars' company line has seemingly made it sound like Posluszny is locked in as a starter.
If Posluszny falters at his new position though, the Jaguars will have even more changes to make on defense. The unit is already dealing with several new players at prominent positions.
“Another group of guys defensively," Posluszny said regarding the turnover from last season.
"The good thing is that [they are] veteran guys who will be able to step right in and have an impact and know how to communicate and know how to practice well. Because it is such a good group of guys, we’re hoping that that transition is fast. Obviously, there’s going to be some challenges in the beginning, but because of the type of guys that we brought in and their skill level and our level of leadership. They’re going to step right in and be able to have an impact.”
Former Arizona Cardinals lineman Calais Campbell is one of those new players. The newly added veteran has brought a sense of optimism with him to Jacksonville. He has won in the past and Posluszny believes Campbell's approach could rub off on his new teammates.
“Being around a veteran guy that has experienced the playoffs, so he’s awesome," Posluszny said. "Awesome guy to have in the locker room. Hard working. He’s dedicated. He’s a very vocal and very trusted player. It’s going to be great to have him on the field. Great to have him in the locker room.”
The Jaguars also have a new regime to adjust to. Posluszny, a team-first leader, believes the new voices at the top will help usher in a new, successful era for the Jaguars.
“The leadership we have at the top with Coach Coughlin and Coach Marrone, there’s a different feel in a lot of ways and in a lot of things in a very positive way," Posluszny said. "That alone should have an enormous impact on the way we play. We’re going to be very disciplined. We’re going to be very physical. Now, we’ll be honed in during training camp. I think training camp will be a great challenge for us this year to really grow and mature and transform this team into what we want it to become.”
Follow Mike Kaye on Twitter at @Mike_E_Kaye.