The NFL Preseason is underway as the Jacksonville Jaguars take on the Cleveland Browns on Saturday night. Each franchise is in very different stages right now, as the Jaguars are developing a young team while the Browns are making a Super Bowl push. Either way, both teams will have plenty to watch in their preseason opener.
The Jaguars are a very young team and head coach Urban Meyer will want to see what he has on the roster. He claimed earlier in the week that there is an open position battle for the starting quarterback spot. If that’s true, these preseason games will play a vital role in helping the Jaguars’ coaching staff decide who deserves the starting job. Meanwhile, the Jacksonville Jaguars defense has a young stud on the line who could be in store for a big game.
The Browns are likely to make the playoffs and some believe they can make a Super Bowl run this year. Even though the roster is stacked, this is a great way for Kevin Stefanski to see how deep the roster really is. Look for a wide receiver to make some noise on Saturday night, while a surprise running back could make the case to be the third-string rusher behind Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt. With that said, here are four bold predictions for the preseason opener between the Jaguars and the Browns.
Jaguars bold predictions
Gardner Minshew keeps the quarterback battle close
Garnder Minshew surprised the league two years ago after playing rather well as a sixth-round pick. However, since drafting Trevor Lawrence, the Jaguars placed Minshew on the trade block. Even so, Meyer claims there is an open battle in the quarterback room. Minshew has been training all offseason, so there might be a legitimate chance for him to win the starting job. Lawrence is a prodigy type of prospect, but Gardner Minshew might make the coaching staff reconsider their decision.
Jay Tufele makes a huge impact
The Jacksonville Jaguars actually have a decent defensive line, but they could receive a huge boost in depth if Jay Tufele plays consistently. He played a large role during his time at USC which could translate to the NFL. According to the Last Word On Sports, Tufele is in a position to earn a solid rotational role if he plays well in the preseason. Look for Tufele to take advantage of his opportunities, as he could carve out a role by proving himself in the preseason opener.
Browns bold predictions
Donovan Peoples-Jones makes a case for a bigger role
Donovan Peoples-Jones has been one of the more consistent players in the Browns training camp. He has built an excellent report with Baker Mayfield and seems to have made drastic improvements since his rookie season. He’s currently listed as the immediate backup behind Jarvis Landry on the Browns unofficial depth chart. Look for Peoples-Jones to separate himself as the obvious third option in the receiver room against the Jaguars on Saturday night. If he can do that, Peoples-Jones might be on the field more often than not this year.
Demetric Felton makes a case to be the third option in the backfield
Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt are in no danger of losing their jobs anytime soon. However, the Browns did bring in Demetric Felton who is an exciting rookie. He’s looked great in training camp so far. So much so, that there’s a chance he takes over as the third running back on the depth chart over D’Ernest Johnson. It’ll be interesting to see how Felton plays, as he should be featured quite often throughout the preseason.