Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Posluszny: Positive about His Role; Whether as Tutor to Rookie Jack or Old Reliable in Middle, He Pledges to Excel

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Posluszny: Positive about His Role; Whether as Tutor to Rookie Jack or Old Reliable in Middle, He Pledges to Excel

Article excerpt

Byline: Ryan O'Halloran

The Jaguars have drafted his replacement ... who he's supposed to help adapt to the NFL ... and who may cut into his playing time right away.

No wonder middle linebacker Paul Posluszny said this year is "absolutely" different for him because of second-round pick Myles Jack's arrival.

Jack will eventually be the Jaguars' every-down middle linebacker. But part of his rookie-season role could be replacing Posluszny in passing situations.

"This will be new for me, and I think this will be the greatest opportunity of my career to show the type of person and player I am," Posluszny said. "It's going to be a huge job for me to get Myles to play right now. In large part, that will be my responsibility.

"But I still want to play. And if my best isn't good enough and Myles is better, he's going to play and that means I'm off [the field]. Let's put it this way - between the [middle linebacker] spot, which I play, and the [weak-side], which Telvin [Smith] plays, the three of us will compete for those [two] spots."

When training camp starts, Jack will learn middle linebacker, but his versatility will allow him to challenge Smith. This is a Jaguars defense desperate for speedy playmakers, and Jack was just that at UCLA.

"We have a very deep group, and we've got tremendous options," linebackers coach Robert Saleh said. "We're not closing the door on [Posluszny] by any means. I wouldn't be surprised at all if he plays on third down because he's such a competitor and has such good movement skills."

Posluszny has started all 116 games of his NFL career, almost exclusively as an every-down linebacker responsible for communicating the play call and any pre-snap adjustments. Since 2008, Posluszny's first year as a starter, he leads the NFL with 725 solo tackles.

In coach Gus Bradley's three years, Posluszny has been a core player.

2013: Played 1,038 of 1,051 snaps (98.8 percent) in 15 games. He missed one week with a concussion. …

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