NFL Nation: Julian Stanford

We hit the Tennessee Titans inactives in the previous post. Here are some thoughts on some inactives from the other three teams in the division:
  • Donnie Avery gets the start for Indianapolis with Austin Collie out. Rookie T.Y. Hilton (shoulder) is also a speedster who isn’t playing. The Colts brought in Avery, a reclamation project, as a guy they thought would help them stretch the field. They’ll need him to show he can today.
  • With Colts left guard Joe Reitz out, we’ve already said: Seth Olsen is a major drop-off and could be a major issue.
  • While Arian Foster (knee) is active, he could see his role trimmed a bit since the Texans are completely comfortable handing the ball to Ben Tate and Justin Forsett.
  • DeVier Posey didn’t make the opening day cut. So the Texans are comfortable with four receivers in Andre Johnson, Kevin Walter, Keshawn Martin and Lestar Jean. They could use returner Trindon Holliday in a pinch. Holliday's presence could keep Posey from dressing for a while.
  • Undrafted rookie Ben Jones can play center or guard, so he’s the interior backup for the Texans. Brandon Brooks, who was competing for right guard during camp, is inactive.
  • Jaguars undrafted rookie receiver Kevin Elliott is playing and veteran Brian Robiskie is not. I hope Elliott gets some chances.
  • With Daryl Smith out, Kyle Bosworth will start for the Jaguars and undrafted rookie Julian Stanford looks to be the fourth linebacker.

Jacksonville Jaguars cut-down analysis

September, 1, 2012
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Click here for the complete list of Jacksonville Jaguars' roster moves.

Most significant move: The team kept six wide receivers as it looks to make dramatic strides in the passing game with quarterback Blaine Gabbert. Laurent Robinson was the big free-agent acquisition and Justin Blackmon was the high draft pick. Brian Robiskie is a reclamation guy and Mike Thomas is a survivor who needs to regain form from early in his career. Cecil Shorts seemed to have stage fright a year ago when he got chances. Kevin Elliott is an undrafted rookie free agent who often shined and is deserving of a spot and some playing time. Only Thomas and Shorts are holdovers from a year ago.

Onward and upward: Several underdogs fill in some roster cracks, including three who caught my eye early in training camp -- Elliott, undrafted rookie linebacker Julian Stanford and running back Jalen Parmele. Parmele is one of four running backs the team kept with Maurice Jones-Drew holding out, along with Rashad Jennings, Montell Owens and Keith Toston. They’ve also got fullback Greg Jones. Other underdogs still standing are undrafted rookie safety Antwon Blake and defensive end George Selvie, who’s already spent time with three different teams, including the Jags once before.

What’s next: Guard Will Rackley was placed on injured reserve. He suffered a high ankle sprain early in camp and, according to AP’s Mark Long, reinjured the ankle. Eben Britton, who the team projected as the right tackle all offseason and at the start of the preseason, is now the left guard. Cameron Bradfield, undrafted a year ago, is now the right tackle and the backup left tackle. Middling veteran Guy Whimper is the backup right tackle, while undrafted rookie Mike Brewster and Josh Beekman, formerly of the Bears, are the interior backups. It sure looks like the team would benefit from adding someone with more of a resume.

Previewing the preseason finales

August, 30, 2012
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Houston Texans

One big question: Can Trindon Holliday play mistake-free and complete a preseason resume good enough to force the team to keep him as a return specialist?

Gary Kubiak’s strategy: Play as few starters for as little as possible. Get out of Dodge, even if Dodge is Reliant Stadium.

The local take: While Kubiak would prefer to keep three quarterbacks, will questions at other positions allow for it? John McClain of the Houston Chronicle discusses it.

Indianapolis Colts

One big question: Can the offensive line provide better pass protection for Andrew Luck and bigger holes for the running backs?

Chuck Pagano’s strategy: After a poor showing last week, he’d really like to see his top people show the Colts can run and stop the run. He still has things he needs to gauge about his young team.

The local take: The Colts could keep four running backs and three safeties on their initial 53-man roster, says Mike Chappell of the Indianapolis Star in his projection.

Jacksonville Jaguars

One big question: Can Blaine Gabbert, the second-year quarterback who’s had a quality preseason, finish strong and keep the vibe upbeat as the Jaguars head toward their opener?

Mike Mularkey’s strategy: He’d like one long drive for the offense, but could send the starters out more than once if they don’t sustain much early. The starting defense will be on the field a couple times.

The local take: Five rookies on the bubble who can help themselves, from Vito Stellino of the Florida Times-Union. Linebacker Julian Stanford and receiver Kevin Elliott were two of the best undrafted rookies I saw during my camp tour.

Tennessee Titans

One big question: Can Jake Locker show at least a little more progress, and continue to build his confidence and the team’s confidence in him?

Mike Munchak’s strategy: While the Saints will sit plenty of people, the Titans are still looking for some work for their primary people who are healthy.

The local take: Running back/returner Darius Reynaud, defensive tackle Zach Clayton, receiver Michael Preston and tight end Brandon Barden are among the players who know they can help themselves with one last good impression, says Jim Wyatt of The Tennessean.

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