Jaguars Named NFL’s Best Team In This Very Important Area

Jacksonville Jaguars
Morgan Tencza-USA TODAY Sports

The Jacksonville Jaguars didn’t even make the playoffs last season, so most would probably hesitate to call them the best (or even near the best) in the NFL at anything.

However, Jeff Diamond of The 33rd Team sees a particular area in which the Jaguars excel: their defensive front.

Diamond has given Jacksonville the title of the best defensive line/edge in football, citing Josh Allen, Travon Walker, Arik Armstead, Ray Robertson-Harris, DaVon Hamilton and rookie Maason Smith as key pieces along the club’s front seven.

It’s actually pretty hard to argue against the Jags being near the top of the league in this category.

Allen has quietly established himself as one of the best pass rushers in football, as he racked up 17.5 sacks en route to his second Pro Bowl appearance in 2023.

Meanwhile, Walker—the No. 1 overall pick from 2022—broke out with 10 sacks of his own last year after a rather disappointing rookie campaign.

Armstead was a major free-agent addition for the squad, and the rest of the supplementary pieces in the trenches are certainly impressive for the Jaguars.

How good will the Jaguars be as a whole in 2024?

Jacksonville had very high expectations going into last season. This year? Not so much.

As a matter of fact, many are placing the Jags third in the AFC South division between the rising Houston Texans and the upstart Indianapolis Colts.

The Jaguars got off to an 8-3 start in 2023 and resembled genuine contenders in a very deep conference. They then went on a miserable slide, losing five of their last six games to finish 9-8 and miss the postseason entirely.

It was the inverse of 2022, when Jacksonville got hurt in the second half of the year, won the AFC South and even defeated the Los Angeles Chargers in the Wild Card Round.

Perhaps the relatively tame expectations heading into 2024 will actually help the Jags?

There will definitely be considerable pressure on quarterback Trevor Lawrence, who just landed a five-year, $275 million extension, but you have to figure he will play better than he did this past season (if not, the Jaguars will be in some significant trouble moving forward).

It also helps that the Jaguars don’t play in the toughest division. While the AFC South is competitive, it isn’t exactly the AFC North.

We’ll see if Jacksonville’s dangerous front seven will help lead it back to the playoffs.

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