Good news, fans: Starters will play on Friday for Jaguars

Coach Doug Pederson said that he wants players to get a feel for the game

Trevor Lawrence of the Jacksonville Jaguars warms up prior to the 2022 Pro Hall of Fame Game against the Las Vegas Raiders at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium on August 04, 2022 in Canton, Ohio. (Photo by Nick Cammett/Getty Images) (Nick Cammett, 2022 Getty Images)

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Jaguars wrapped up a light walkthrough practice on Wednesday with one very important message for fans — Jacksonville will get its starters onto the gridiron for Friday’s matchup with the Cleveland Browns.

Head coach Doug Pederson said that he wanted his starters team to get live-action game experience and reps when the Browns visit TIAA Bank Field at 7 p.m.

“I’m going to let the starters play, you know, get their feet wet a little bit for a couple of series,” Pederson said. “I just want them to get a feel of the game.”

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He specifically mentioned how he wanted the offense to gel with Trevor Lawrence at the helm for his second year.

“Well, it’s important for him [Lawrence] and the offense. It’s a new scheme and new people out there that he’s working with,” Pederson said. “We want to see everything put together and have some good execution.”

The Jaguars played and lost in the annual Hall of Fame Game to the Las Vegas Raiders last Thursday, 27-11. After the loss, practices on Sunday and Monday ramped up the intensity.

The pads were on, and players were letting loose on each other.

Andre Cisco laid a brutal hit on Travis Etienne as he was going out of bounds on Sunday, one of the headlining hits of camp.

“We made eye contact, so it wasn’t a cheap hit,” Cisco said. “It was a decent hit but nothing too hard.”

Despite the hard-looking hit, Pederson said Etienne has embraced the contract and said it’s something he’s been wanting.

“He was ready for the contact, and he enjoys it,” Pederson said. “It’s been a while since he got hit, so he was looking forward to it. Excited to see what he does Friday.”

Among starters not playing, James Robinson and Jamal Agnew are getting back into team drills but will sit out Friday as they recover. Defensively, rookie Devin Lloyd will also miss the action as he battles a lingering hamstring issue.

While starters will get some playing time come Friday for the Jaguars, the question still stands for Cleveland.

Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski said before Day 11 of training camp that he has a plan for how to play his quarterbacks in the game, but he hasn’t shared it with them yet so that he wouldn’t reveal it to reporters.

Newly acquired quarterback Deshaun Watson will make the trip to Jacksonville (if he’s not suspended indefinitely before then) for Friday night’s first preseason game, Stefanski said Tuesday. He would play for the first time since the end of the 2020 season, pending Peter C. Harvey’s appeal ruling.

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