JACKSONVILLE – Doug Marrone is a Myles Jack fan.
If that wasn’t evident before, it was when the Jaguars’ head coach discussed the fourth-year linebacker this week.
Marrone was asked during this week’s 2019 NFL Annual Meeting if signing veteran linebacker Jake Ryan recently as an unrestricted free agent from the Green Bay Packers might mean moving Jack from middle linebacker. Marrone said it did not, then discussed Jack at length.
“Myles Jack is always an interesting subject,” Marrone said Wednesday during the AFC-NFC Coaches Breakfast at the Arizona Biltmore. “The perspective I have on Myles Jack seems to be so different than everyone else, meaning the media and or people who ask me questions about him.”
Jack, a second-round selection in the 2016 NFL Draft from UCLA, has increased his role in each of his three NFL seasons. He started at strong-side linebacker as a rookie in 2016 before starting at strong in base situations and moving to middle in passing situations in 2017.
He moved to the middle full time when former Jaguars middle linebacker Paul Posluszny retired in the 2018 offseason.
“I look at Myles Jack as gosh how lucky are we that we have this guy that can play Sam (strongside), Mike (middle) and Will (weakside),” Marrone said. “In the beginning, I think Mike was a position where you have to get experience because you are seeing things at a different level, but look how quickly Myles picked that up and he was able to play at a high level.”
Jack, after a standout 2017 postseason, entered 2018 focused being a consistent playmaker as he transitioned to the middle full time. While hack didn’t reach the Pro Bowl level last season that many observers predicted for him, Marrone said in no way was 2018 a disappointment for Jack.
“We are fortunate to have someone like Myles Jack in that he is big, he is strong, he is fast, he can tackle, he has great ball skills,” Marrone said. “When people say, is Myles a Will, is he a Mike, is he a Will, is he a Sam? It is very difficult for me – what is he? He is good enough to be any of them and be the best at those positions. I really believe that.”