In recent years, the Jaguars training camp practices have featured, well... the Jaguars. We’re in a new decade now, and times, they are a changin’.
The Jaguars plan on traveling to “Hotlanta” to practice with Ormond Beach native and former Jacksonville defensive coordinator Mike Smith and his Atlanta Falcons.
Both Jaguars head coach Jack Del Rio and Falcons head man Mike Smith maintain a good relationship.
“I have a great amount of respect and admiration for Jack,” Mike Smith said in an exclusive interview with CB Sports Radio.
Del Rio believes that it will benefit both units to spend a little time together this summer.
“I talked with Mike Smith this offseason and thought it would be good to get our football teams together,” Del Rio said.
So what will a practice with another team accomplish?
“We thought that we both had teams that would be able to work together, raise the level of competition for a couple days in camp, give ourselves a chance to get exposure to different route combinations, different running schemes, just match ourselves up against another football team. I think it’s a great opportunity to do just that,” Del Rio explained. “It’s practice.”
Del Rio has denied that familiarity played any role in his and Smith’s decision, “No. Every year is different,” Del Rio stated. “I feel like it’s a good opportunity. It’s right for us.”
The Jaguars will see some of their former teammates as linebacker Mike Peterson and cornerback Brian Williams are both expected to be on the Falcons roster, along with long-snapper Joe Zelenka. These former teammates should make for good competition without things getting heated, which is exactly what the coaches are looking for.