As the days inch closer to the opening of training camp for the Jacksonville Jaguars, the search for yet another emerging defensive star looms. Perhaps a player that is flying under the radar until the pads are on. A raw athlete that has yet to reach his full potential among a defense littered with talent. It is time for defensive tackle Taven Bryan to embrace the spotlight and cause havoc at the line of scrimmage.
Despite only making 14 starts in three years at the University of Florida, he impressed scouts at the scouting combine in 2018. Bryan’s selection by the Jaguars in the first round of the 2018 draft received its share of confusion among fans. As his rookie season unfolded, his lack of impact on the field received its fair share of criticism as well.
Was that fair? Perhaps. Was he playing out of position? Apparently so. Bryan compiled only 20 total tackles along with a lone sack during his rookie year. Not an impressive stat line by any means. However, his first season was an internship to learn under veterans like Calais Campbell and Malik Jackson. For instance, a chance to learn what it takes to be a professional. Bryan gained valuable experience and remained healthy in 2018. Now, with Jackson gone, the learning period is over and his time is now.
Taven Bryan Ready For Breakout Season
The switch from the edge to the inside at in October gave Bryan an opportunity to showcase his raw tools. Bryan flashed at times toward the end of the season and showcased his freakish athleticism. Bryan’s gifts of size, speed, and strength will not keep him on the sidelines for very long behind veteran Abry Jones. However, he needs to increase his football mindset and trust his instincts. Be ruthless, yet in the right position. Combining his physical attributes with mental awareness will make him a factor this season and down the road.
In order to see more playing time, Bryan will need to penetrate the line of scrimmage and create pressure on a quarterback. By providing pressure up the middle, this will allow the Jaguars’ talented group of edge rushers to attack in a smaller area. If a quarterback is unable to get to his “spot” or if he is uncomfortable, the advantage goes to the defense. Bryan does not need to have a gaudy number of sacks, just disruption and disruption often to impact the game on the defensive side.
How Taven Bryan Can Fit the Defense
The Jacksonville Jaguars need to return to the aggressive form that created the nickname “Sacksonville”. Having the defensive front work together and pressure opposing quarterbacks begins in the middle of the line of scrimmage. Taven Bryan must learn from his rookie experience and step in to replace the void at defensive tackle. It all begins with Bryan causing disruption at the point of attack. After that, the speed from the edge takes over to close the gap to the quarterback. Bryan has an opportunity to bask in the spotlight and erase the doubters in 2019.
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