JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Who turned up the heat? The Jaguars hit the field for the second day of training camp practice Thursday and it was scorching … both literally and figuratively.
Fans were back in the stands to watch practice for the first time since 2019, and the fans that stayed until the end were treated to a show. The man people came to see Trevor Lawrence was on the money Thursday. Fans showered him with cheers from the second he walked on the field and they continued throughout practice. The only player that got nearly as many cheers was Tim Tebow.
For anyone who was holding out hope that Gardner Minshew would start games over Lawrence this season, you can put that in the ‘not going to happen pile.’
On Day 1, Minshew took snaps with the starters. On Day 2, Lawrence was taking snaps from Brandon Linder and working with the first team. Fans left practice Thursday sold that Lawrence is as good as advertised and will be fantastic this season.
While some of that is true, let’s temper those expectations a bit. A few of the plays that drew the loudest cheers from fans were plays that in a real game or a live practice would have seen the receiver get hit hard or even the pass intercepted.
Lawrence did make some very impressive throws, but it was not quite the flawless performance that some may think it was. I mentioned after Day 1 that Urban Meyer asked the defense to play loosely. Defenders are pulling up to avoid contact and letting receivers make some catches that would never be made during games.
By far the most impressive thing that I saw from Lawrence was a touchdown he threw down the sideline to Marvin Jones Jr. The play design was beautiful. The tight end helped to clear out the coverage and then Lawrence was able to look off the safety and drop a beautiful pass to Jones who had beaten his man. That is the type of play I’d like to see more of.
• Sidney Jones IV looks like he has picked up right where he left off last season. Jones has been the only defensive player to come up with an interception so far though camp. (Don’t panic about the lack of INT’s the guys are playing off. See above)
• Urban Meyer spent some time on the field before practice working with DJ Chark on his release technique. It is good to see Meyer being this hands on with the players.
Urban Meyer working with DJ Chark on his get offs pic.twitter.com/YoZUE7s2l8— Jamal St. Cyr (@JStCyrTV) July 29, 2021
• Laviska Shenault could have a monster year. He flashed during OTAs and minicamp and continues to look good so far. James Robinson mentioned him as a guy who is bigger, stronger and faster.
• K’Lavon Chassion had a few good reps in team drills. Towards the end of practice, he rounded the corner so quickly he looked like a lion hunting his prey (Minshew) on a few reps.
• Josh Hammond continues to catch everything in sight. Similar to what I saw last year in camp. Not sure if he will be able to get the need separation once the pads go on.
• Jalen Camp looked far more refined that I expected him to be. Or maybe he’s just able to out-athlete guys. Either way, Camp has been able to create massive separation at times and has shown some good hands.
• After talking about the heat on Wednesday, Jihad Ward hit the field wearing a hoodie under his pads today. Brave choice.
• Jaguars owner Shad Khan and former college football coach Lou Holtz both spent some time on the field watching practice.
• Tim Tebow has some work to do. Tebow gives effort in every drill but is being coached up after many of his reps. That can be seen as a positive and a negative.
• Tyler Davis is just huge, man. He moves very well for his size. I think Davis could flash when they put the pads on.