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Jaguars’ Calais Campbell is hoping Telvin Smith plays during the 2019 season

Calais Campbell, Telvin Smith

Calais Campbell hasn’t given up on the prospect that Telvin Smith will end up taking the field in 2019 after all. Just over three weeks after the Jacksonville Jaguars’ star linebacker announced he was stepping away from football this season, Campbell told reporters on Monday that he continues hoping Smith will reconsider his stance.

“I’m still holding out a little hope,” he said, per Pro Football Talk’s Michael David Smith.

Smith, a Pro Bowler and Second Team All-Pro in 2017, signed a four-year, $45.5 million contract extension with Jacksonville in October 2017, solidifying his status as a fixture of one of the league’s youngest, most dangerous defenses. He wasn’t quite as impactful last season, though, putting up solid numbers of 134 tackles and two interceptions, but nevertheless rating as merely “above average” among players at his position according to Pro Football Focus.

On May 10th, addressing rumors of his uncertain status for the 2019 season, Smith posted on Instagram that he was electing to sit the 2019 season out.

“It was said to me from a great coach, that in order for the man to be his best, he must get his world in order,” Smith wrote. “At this time I must take time away from the game & get my world in order. I must give this time back to myself, my family, & my health.

“I appreciate all the support I will & will not get. I just ask y’all respect my decision to not play football this season.”

Campbell, a four-time Pro Bowler, was a co-captain of the Jaguars with Smith last season.