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Jaguars Training Camp, Day 3: 5 Observations on Travon Walker, Gerrit Prince and More

Second-year tight end Gerrit Prince shined during Friday's practice, but what else did we see?

The Jacksonville Jaguars turned in for Day 3 of training camp on Friday, putting together another solid day of work at Miller Electric Center -- this time with a focus on red-zone offense and defense.

So, what all did we see at practice? We break it down below. 

Gerrit Prince has a standout day 

It is hard to imagine any player did more for their stock on Friday than second-year tight end Gerrit Prince. A day after starting tight end Evan Engram gushed over his skill set, Prince made two of the best catches of the day on touchdown grabs in the back of the end-zone against tight coverage, with one coming against Tre Herndon. It was one of the best grabs a player has made in camp this year, and the crowd reacted accordingly.

Considering the hype that Prince received inside the building over the spring, it would have been disappointing for him to not flash something over the first few days of practice. He did so in a big way on Friday and now all eyes will be on him throughout the rest of camp. The Jaguars might have used a second-round pick on a tight end, but it was Prince who has the hype behind him so far.

"He was the young guy last year that was kind of all over the place, adjusting and learning how to be a pro. Talking to coach [Head Coach Doug Pederson] and I talked to coach over the summer, he was giving me updates," Engram said about Prince on Thursday.

"Every time I talked to Coach, GP [TE Gerrit Prince] was doing better, GP was more locked in, GP was taking more advantage of the opportunity he has. He’s a really talented player, he’s a really fluid athlete and he's a tight end that is made for Doug’s [Head Coach Doug Pederson] offense. Just the growth I’ve seen in him, and even him now, he’s coaching guys in the meeting room better than I think I could. Really proud of the steps he’s taken, and he’s still got a lot of work to do, but the opportunity is at his fingertips. I’m very excited about his future, his potential, playing with him, him being able to learn from me, and honestly, I could probably learn some things from him too.”

Travon Walker shows growth 

It was clear during Travon Walker's rookie season that his work on the edge was going to be, well, a work in progress. You could almost see the gears moving each time he was faced with motions and certain formations, things he was experienced as an edge player for the first time in his career. The Jaguars are confident that the year of learning will serve him well moving forward, though, and Friday was an example of why.

On one play during red-zone drills, Walker bit on a fake and ended up on the opposite side of the field from where the play was going. This is what the offense wants the edge rushers to do, and it worked to perfection. But shortly after, Walker faced virtually the same exact situation. He didn't bite this time, instead dropping into coverage and diving in front of a pass intended for Travis Etienne to knock it to the ground. 

Defensive coordinator Mike Caldwell was one of the first people to hit the field and congratulate him, and it was obvious why. In that two-play sample alone, Walker showed the type of mental growth the Jaguars need from him on the field this year.

Up and down day for Trevor Lawrence's red-zone work 

Defense is always ahead of offense in the early days of training camp; there are rarely any exceptions. And while the offense had some stand out plays on Monday, it can be argued the last two days belonged to the defense. Part of this is due to strong performances from the defense, but part of it has also been an offense that is still looking to hit its grove early on in camp. This showed up the most in the red-zone periods, with Trevor Lawrence having both positive and negative moments. 

On one hand, Lawrence was simply off on some of his throws. He overthrew Evan Engram in the seam on one play and then missed an open Christian Kirk on another by releasing the ball too early. He also threw behind Zay Jones to lead to an incompletion that bogged down a series. 

But that isn't all his day consisted of. He also made two impressive tight window touchdowns to Calvin Ridley, while helping Gerrit Prince have the practice of his career thanks to some well-placed passes. It was up and down for Lawrence and the passing game overall, and maybe that should be expected when it is this early in camp.

Devin Lloyd has a disruptive afternoon 

One player who has been in the backfield a good bit through the first three days of camp has been second-year linebacker Devin Lloyd. Lloyd has made some impact stops or has generated pressure throughout the early stages of camp, and Friday was no different as he applied pressure on Lawrence throughout the day and likely would have recorded one sack on a blitz. 

Lloyd likely won't ever be a true designated pass-rusher off the edge, but he has the athleticism to be a tenacious blitzer. If the Jaguars can unlock that aspect of his game, the impact plays he made during the first month of his rookie season should return. It doesn't look like a competition between Lloyd and fellow linebacker Chad Muma, either. Through three days, it looks like Lloyd's job and Lloyd's alone. 

Play of the day 

The most impressive play of the day came from the backup offense, with C.J. Beathard dropping an absolutely beautiful touch pass to wide receiver Seth Williams in the corner of the end zone to beat Montaric Brown for a touchdown. The pass had to be perfect to be completed, and it was. After the play, Williams made sure to celebrate and feed off the crowd's energy -- an example of just how big of an impact a lively crowd at practices can make.

Other notes

  • Josh Allen has been dominant through three days of camp. Pads aren't on yet, but he has given both Anton Harrison and Walker Little fits. 
  • Nathan Rourke made a nice touchdown pass in red-zone drills. It has been a solid camp for Rourke.
  • D'Ernest Johnson continues to impress. He looked comfortable as a pass-catcher on Friday, including one rep where he beat a linebacker for a would-be touchdown. Expect him to have a special teams role, too. 
  • Brenton Strange scored a touchdown during team drills, scoring on a short pass from C.J. Beathard. 
  • Tank Bigsby continues to look like a natural as a pass-catcher. Not sure he has let a ball hit the ground yet, on air or vs. the defense.