JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Over the next 20 days, News4Jax will count down the 20 most important figures to the Jaguars' success in the 2019 season.
Two seasons ago A.J. Bouye was one of the best cornerbacks in the NFL. Bouye struggled with nagging injuries in 2018 and as a result his production dipped. This offseason Bouye has focused on returning to the Pro Bowl level he established in 2017.
2018 Stats: 54 tackles, INT
2019 Projection: When Bouye and Jalen Ramsey are healthy there’s hard to find a better cornerback duo in the NFL. Bouye is a true student of his craft. During OTAs he shared that he spends time studying athletes outside of football like Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant and Manny Machado.
Health is the No. 1 issue for Bouye. It’s hard to make an All-Pro team but it wouldn’t be a surprise to see Bouye receiving Pro Bowl consideration by the end of the 2019 season.
With the losses of Barry Church and Tashaun Gipson this off-season the Jaguars are lacking a vocal leader in their secondary. While Ramsey would rather lead by example, Bouye has volunteered to fill that void. The off-season program was the first chance for Bouye to get a feel for new safeties Ronnie Harrison and Jarrod Wilson.
Jaguars head coach Doug Marrone on what he saw out of A.J. Bouye during the off-season program: “He’s kind of come back with this sense of, for lack of a better term, ‘I’m back, I’m going to work on this, I’m dedicated to this.’ All of those things, all of the details, all of the things that have gotten him to be such a good player. You see a lot of the emphasis for him being on [top of] that. You see it on the side. Those are the things that we talk about with players where you don’t really see a lot. On the side, he may be doing something little, maybe just a little footwork that he’s going to be in in press coverage, by himself, on air. Just very much engaged to the skill of his game. That’s what I see from him right now.”
It may not look like much but this is how AJ Bouye and Jalen Ramsey spend their “rest periods” of #jaguars practice...by working on their footwork on the side. It’s the small things that allow those guys to play at a high level on Sundays. @wjxt4 @Sports4Jax pic.twitter.com/CnMdaBSX2K— Brian Jackson (@BrianJacksonTV) June 13, 2019