The Jaguars acquired Nick Foles to add some juice to their offense this season. They’ll need to protect him to make sure their investment pays off.
Any hope the Jaguars have of fielding a more dynamic offense in 2019 will require Nick Foles to enjoy a very productive season. A big part of that formula is keeping him upright. That means Jacksonville will need terrific offensive line play to protect their massive investment.
Left tackle is arguably the most important position on the line. The Jaguars rely on Cam Robinson to protect their quarterback’s blind side. Unfortunately for Foles, he’s not going to have the former Alabama star’s services when training camp begins. He’s going to begin camp on the PUP list in an effort to finish rehabbing from a knee injury he suffered last September.
The Jaguars hope this is only a minor blip on Robinson’s road back to the starting lineup. In all fairness, he has made significant progress already in his effort to return to full health. The most likely scenario is that Robinson will be cleared for full action within the next several weeks.
Any setback for Robinson could be disastrous for the Jaguars hopes of making a run to the postseason. The options behind him at left tackle are sparse. Josh Wells is currently listed as his backup, but it’s more likely that Jacksonville would shift either Will Richardson or rookie Jawaan Taylor over to the left side if Robinson is forced to miss significant time. Either would represent a massive downgrade.
The good news for the Jaguars is that they can afford to give Robinson plenty of time to recover. They’re not installing a new offense that’s going to drastically change the way he’s asked to play. Jacksonville should throw the ball more this season, but they aren’t going to suddenly turn to an air raid-style offense. The strength of the unit will continue to be running behind their physical offensive line.
The idea of using Robinson and Andrew Norwell side by side to push opponents off the line of scrimmage gives the Jaguars offense a terrific starting point. The team needs Robinson to be 100 percent ready to go before the regular season begins if they’re going to use that as the base of their offensive scheme. Anything less could plunge this offense back into mediocrity.