Kaye's Take: Thoughts on the Jaguars initial 53-man roster

The Jaguars made 22 moves to get down to the NFL's 53-man roster limit on Saturday.

The transactions forged the team's initial roster heading into the regular season. While anything can happen with so much talent sitting on the waiver wires, this is the 53-man squad that earned the right to be in Jacksonville based on a long offseason.

Below are my thoughts on the Jaguars initial 53-man roster:

Italics = Rookie, Italics + Bold = Free Agent Signing

Quarterback (3) 

Blake Bortles, Chad Henne, Brandon Allen

Thoughts: Based on how the league has reacted to the quarterback position in Dallas, Minnesota and Philadelphia, depth at the most important position is evident. Henne was going to be Bortles' backup regardless of the offseason, but Allen showed that he should stick around. Allen can continue to develop behind the veterans and learn how to take over for Henne in the long-term. The team clearly didn't want to risk Allen to waivers.

Running Back (5)

T.J. Yeldon, Chris Ivory, Corey Grant, Denard Robinson, Joe Banyard

Thoughts: The Jaguars have gone surprisingly heavy at running back. The Ivory-Yeldon duo should produce in droves for the Jaguars and Grant has clearly wrapped up the kick returner job. Robinson will probably spend most of his time on special teams, with an offensive package designated for his versatility. Banyard earned his job throughout camp and should have a role on special teams as well.

Tight End (4)

Julius Thomas, Marcedes Lewis, Ben Koyack, Neal Sterling

Thoughts: Thomas and Lewis make a solid tandem and they will now be backed up by last year's two seventh round picks. Koyack has improved as a blocker and looked good at fullback during the preseason. Sterling will likely backup Thomas, as he showed off his ability to run routes and get open in the offseason. 

Wide Receiver (5)

Allen Robinson, Allen Hurns, Marqise Lee, Rashad Greene, Bryan Walters

Thoughts: The first four were locked to return. Walters outlasted Arrelious Benn, Shaq Evans, Rashad Lawrence and Tony Washington to earn the fifth spot for a second-straight season.

Offensive Line (9)

Kelvin Beachum, Luke Joeckel, Brandon Linder, A.J. Cann, Jermey Parnell, Tyler Shatley, Chris Reed, Patrick Omameh, Josh Wells

Thoughts: There aren't any surprises here. Beachum was named the left tackle this week, along with Luke Joeckel at left guard. Shatley, Wells and Reed are former undrafted players that have impressed the coaching staff during their time in Jacksonville. Wells is recovering from thumb surgery but could be the swing tackle when he returns. Omameh is veteran depth at tackle and that was badly needed moving forward. 

Defensive Line (10)

Dante Fowler, Malik Jackson, Roy Miller, Jared Odrick, Sen'Derrick Marks, Tyson Alualu, Chris Smith, Sheldon DayYannick Ngakoue, Abry Jones (Injured Reserve: Michael Bennett)

Thoughts: The Jaguars clearly wanted veteran experience behind Fowler and Ngakoue at Leo. While Smith has only played 13 games, the team knows what he is and he has improved quite a bit against the run. Day is a depth player worth being excited about and he fills Bennett's role with the Ohio State product now on injured reserve.

Linebacker (5)

Telvin Smith, Paul Posluszny, Dan SkutaMyles Jack, Hayes Pullard

Thoughts: Perhaps the most perplexing situation in the aftermath of Saturday's moves is what has happened at linebacker. The team clearly trusts Jack's versatility, as he and Pullard are now the only backup linebackers. The starters will return from last year, but Jack is waiting the wings. Pullard earned his spot with strong preseason play. Still, five is a risky number.

Cornerback (5)

Jalen Ramsey, Davon House, Prince Amukamara, Dwayne Gratz, Josh Johnson (Suspended: Aaron Colvin)

Thoughts: Ramsey, House and Amukamara will make up the top three cornerbacks, but Gratz and Johnson have shown they can play in the league. Gratz should be thrown into the mix at times and play in dime formation. Johnson will mostly play on special teams and could see some work at nickel if the others struggle. Colvin is serving a four-game suspension.

Safety (4)

Tashaun Gipson, Johnathan Cyprien, Peyton Thompson, Jarrod Wilson (4)

Thoughts: Cyprien and Gipson just have the feel of an improved starting safety duo. Thompson was a lock and the team clearly likes him as a backup free safety. Wilson played both safety positions in college and has unique size. Wilson is the only undrafted player to make this year's initial 53-man roster.

Special Teams (3)

Jason Myers, Brad Nortman, Carson Tinker 

Thoughts: This group was decided after the third game of the preseason. Myers had an up-and-down offseason, but the front office clearly trusts him.

Follow Mike Kaye on Twitter at @Mike_E_KayeDOWNLOAD the free First Coast Football app for year-round Jaguars coverage featuring analysis, stories, scores and more.


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