Jaguars 'Proud' of Jawaan Taylor's 2019, But Still Looking for Improvement in Final Stretch

John Shipley

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Jacksonville Jaguars right tackle Jawaan Taylor has started all 12 games and played every offensive snap since becoming the team's second-round draft selection in the 2019 NFL Draft. For the 22-year old, who is the youngest player on Jacksonville's roster, it has been a learning experience. 

Taylor has provided stability to a right tackle spot that was completely in flux in 2018 and has shown all of the traits necessary to succeed on the edge; quickness, strength, toughness, and flexibility. By all intents and purposes, Taylor has impressed in his rookie season.

"I’m proud of Jawaan, I really am," Jaguars offensive coordinator John DeFilippo said Thursday. "He’s drawn some tough assignments this year now. We’ve played some darn good fronts." 

But there have also been negatives with the positives, specifically the fact Taylor has struggled with penalties. His 13 penalties (six holdings, five false starts) are the most amongst NFL offensive linemen and is a major focus over the final month of the season.

"And obviously I’d love to see him – he needs to cut down on the penalties, and I think he would tell you that. I’ve heard Coach Marrone speak of that," DeFilippo said. "There’s two things I’d like Jawaan to work on, it’s just his consistency. Where his hands are at times, his punch, where he strikes a defender at the point of attack. And then obviously finishing people, and I think when we do that it’ll naturally cut down on those penalties.”

Head coach Doug Marrone said Wednesday that while Taylor has had issues with the penalties, he knows he is a better player than the yellow flags show. The final four games for the Jaguars (4-8) are important for everyone on the roster, but especially important for Taylor as he tries to establish consistency, Marrone said.

"I think that he is growing as the season’s going. I think you see those growing pains with young players, but I really believe he’s going to be a much more consistent player and that’s what we’re looking for here at the end of this season," Marrone said.

"But I do think that he’ll get better. I think it’s hard to judge the year when you’re not playing well [as a team], but he’s going to have a lot of experience and I think these last four games will say a lot about the direction that he’s going.”

Taylor has the full support of his coaches and is critical of himself, noting to JaguarMaven this week that there are a few different areas of his game he wants to work on over this final month. Overall, the positives have outweighed the negatives, but Taylor and the Jaguars are always looking for more.