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Jaguars 2011 Position Battles – Wide Receiver

As we seemingly draw closer to a new CBA, I feel its time to take a look into another of the Jaguars position battles. While the starting position at wide receiver seems to be set with Mike Thomas and Jason Hill, the battle is for the 3rd receiver which will be between veteran Kassim Osgood and rookie Cecil Shorts III. While both players are going to be mainstays as returners on special teams, the team feels that both could really add an extra punch to the offense. One thing is for sure, both players are looking to make a statement in training camp, and in the pre season.

Kassim Osgood

Pros: Has played 8 seasons in the NFL, he knows what to expect from defenses. While he hasn’t been with Jacksonville long he knows the system they run, and what the coaches want from him on the field. Kassim is regarded as one of the best kick returners in the game, an attribute that makes the team believe he can be a threat on the offense as well. Kassim is a three time pro bowler.

Cons: Has never seen consistent time on the field as a receiver. Has only 39 career receptions, for 707 yards. Now the question becomes can he be a consistent threat to the defense when he is on the field. There are no guarantees in this league so just because he can light up on special teams doesn’t mean it can translate to the offense.

Cecil Shorts

Pros: Has a passion and desire to win and make an impact. Shorts holds most division 3 receiving records while at Mount Union. Shorts is a speedster, he has the kind of speed that can make him quite a commodity to the offense. While he isn’t the biggest guy on the field he is a multi-faceted tool as he played quarterback in college and high school.

Cons: While he has great speed, how does his speed compare to the corners he will be facing? Will it be enough for him to be a burner and get open? Hasn’t seen an NFL defense on the field, and with the lockout he is behind the curve on learning the offense and the calls and reads on the field. When the lockout ends, will he sign in time to get on the field to make a push for the 3 spot?

Only time is going to tell the end of this story. Based on everything I truly believe that Shorts will win the battle for the 3rd receiver spot simply because he has better speed and is an untouched commodity. While this battle will take all 4 games of the preseason to play out, don’t for a second think that its going to be a dull battle, these two players will be ready to light up plays to make their case for their spot.

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4 Responses to “Jaguars 2011 Position Battles – Wide Receiver”

  1. Gerard Milhouse says:

    The receiver position is a very important position on the football field,you have to be “offensive line minded!”, while you are on the football field. I am a former professional receiver I have played at the X,Y,and Z position’s and at the tight-end position. If you are not being passed the football you should be doing everything in your power that you can to help provide block for other receiver’s who are being passed “too!” ,are help provide block’s for running back’s to give them other option’s while they are running the football if the defensive line has filled in the gap’s that they have to run through, also you have to pay attention to the quarterback when you are running your route , if the offensive line get’s over powered by the defensive line getting away from your defender and getting open is very important so the quarterback still has the option to pass the football to you when the pressure of the defensive line is on him.These are some of the thing’s that a receiver should be doing if they are not being passed the football in practice are when they are playing on the football field and it’s time to play the game for real on game day.

  2. Tyler says:

    This is an awful article…first off, do you truly believe the battle is only between Shorts and Osgood. Osgood is probably the 4th combatant in this battle with Shorts, Jarrett Dillard, and Tiquan Underwood being the top 3. Osgood will certainly have a spot on the team but that is due to his special team prowess, specializing in coverage situations, not as a returner like this article mentions. Our kickoff returner will be Deji Karim most likely. Punt returner may be Scotty McGee’s to lose, but if he does lose it he will certainly be cut, as we have no known uses for a cornerback that can’t cover. Now back to the wide receivers that this Steve Spooner fellow did not feel the need to cover…

    Jarrett Dillard

    Pros: Maybe the most natural route runner on the entire reciving squad, including M80. He also has mad hops, with sure hands, which resulted in quite the college highlight reel. He has been in the system for 2 years now, so he knows Koetter’s system well. He may be the frontrunner for the position.

    Cons: I don’t know because he hasn’t been on the field long enough to see them.

    Tiquan Underwood

    Pros: Blazing, take the top off the defense and never look back, speed. Has also been in the system 2 years, and has actually had more Sunday gameday experience than Dillard.

    Cons: Sometimes appears to be catching like he has 2×4’s glued to his hands. He has dropped some wide open, clutch passes. The kind that tend to lose games and quarterback confidence.

  3. mackt. says:

    Not a fan of Underwood, drops too many balls…as for Dillard, Ive read he’s not as good of a route runner as some say he is, and he also has been known to “take plays off”.

    So I think it is between Osgood and Shorts, and in the end, Osgood is the man that will win the spot!

    • Tyler says:

      @mackt. Where have you read that? Taking plays off is not a typical characteristic of a player that has the career NCAA touchdown record with 60. I will take the 60 TD’s over Osgood’s 4.875 catches per season over the last 8 years. Osgood has more All-Pro appearances as a special teamer (3) than TD’s in a season (2). If ranking these four receivers going into camp, I would put Dillard first, followed by Shorts, Underwood, then lastly Osgood.

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