Free Agent DT Timmy Jernigan Visits With Jaguars
With the Jacksonville Jaguars continuing to lose available players at the defensive tackle position -- whether due to injuries or opt outs -- the team could potentially add a veteran free agent to provide immediate depth.
Per the NFL's official transaction wire, defensive tackle Timmy Jernigan officially visited with the Jaguars. Jernigan posted a picture on his Instagram story on Wednesday with Jacksonville as the tagged location.
Looking into Jernigan makes a lot of sense considering his experience and production at nose tackle, and other alignments, in 4-3 defenses in the past. While there is more risk involved with Jernigan due to an extensive injury history, one could argue he has an even higher ceiling of potential impact than Woods. We labeled Jernigan last week as one of the most logical options to potentially replace Woods in 2020:
Former second-round pick Timmy Jernigan originally agreed to a one-year deal with the Houston Texans earlier this offseason, but the deal fell apart before it could become official, meaning the talented defensive tackle is still looking for a team. In terms of pure talent, the 27-year-old may be the most enticing option on this list considering the impact he has made for the Baltimore Ravens and Philadelphia Eagles dating back to 2014.
Jernigan's career has been derailed by injuries in recent years and he has only played 13 games over the last two seasons. But in Jernigan's last fully healthy season in 2017, he was a key piece to the Eagles' Super Bowl run. That year, he recorded 2.5 sacks, a career-high nine tackles for loss and eight quarterback hits. In the three years before then, Jernigan recorded 13 sacks, 16 tackles for loss, one forced fumble and 35 quarterback hits. As long as he is healthy, he is a high-ceiling option who shouldn't be expensive.
Since 2014, Jernigan has appeared in 71 regular season games with 51 starts. He has recorded 132 tackles, 17.5 sacks, 29 tackles for loss and one fumble recovery.
The obvious question with Jernigan is going to be just how healthy he is and how durable he can be over the course of a 16-game season, but adding him would likely be a best-case scenario for the Jaguars considering the season is just a month away.
Players with Jernigan's talent aren't often available in the middle of training camp, though Jernigan likely would not be unsigned if he didn't have an injury history. Still, the Jaguars could replace Woods with a high-ceiling player with a solid resume, which should be seen as a positive considering the circumstances.