Jacksonville Jaguars: 5 Reasons Matt Roth Was a Massive Signing for Jaguars
Roth played in a 4-3 defense at Iowa but had played at outside linebacker since he came to the NFL. He will be making the transition back to his playing days at Iowa.
Defensive line was the only area of the defense that the Jaguars had not addressed in free agency. The team had already signed linebackers Paul Posluszny of Buffalo and Clint Session, of Indianapolis as well as defensive backs Dawan Landry of Baltimore and Drew Coleman of the New York Jets.
His signing reveals several things for a team that finished 8-8 on the season and missed the playoffs.
It Allows Him to Be Reunited with Aaron Kampman
Both Roth and Kampman played at Iowa in college. He started out as a middle linebacker but made the transition to the line in 2002.
The fact that the two have played together before makes the transition to a new team a little easier.
Kampman was the team's biggest free agent signing last season when he left the Green Bay Packers to come south.
Kampman tore his ACL during the season and finished the season on injured reserve.
Hopefully He Can Erase the Memories of Derrick Harvey
Actually the entire 2008 draft.
Roth moves into a slot that was supposed to be Harvey's, but the former first-round pick out of Florida in 2008 never lived up to the hype that made the Jaguars trade up in the first round to draft him.
If Roth can rush the passer and get a sack or two, he will be a much better fit for this team than Harvey ever was.
He Adds Another Body to the Defensive Rotation
Competition is always good.
Roth provides another body in a decent defensive end rotation.
This means that the other ends; Austen Lane, Larry Hart, Jeremy Mincey, Aaron Morgan and Kampman, will be fresher when they come into the game
His Signing Shows the Team Has Filled Holes on the Line
The linebacking corps of Paul Posluszny, Clint Session and holdover Daryl Smith, who led the team in tackles last year, is one of better units in the AFC, if not the NFL.
And when Jaguars general manager Gene Smith made significant upgrades in the secondary, it looked as if the team was done signing defensive players.
The defensive line fell off when Kampman was hurt and while Mincey picked up the slack and led the team in sacks, there was still a need for a pass rusher.
If Blaine Gabbert had not been available, it was a good bet this team would have drafted a defensive end like Ryan Kerrigan with the 16th pick.
He Can Help the Interior Linemen Get Better
The play of both Kampman and Roth will allow the interior linemen, mainly Tyson Alualu and Terrance Knighton.
Alualu was the team's first-round draft pick last year and Knighton was a third-rounder last season.
If Alualu continues to develop and Knighton can get into playing shape and show his skills like he did last season, this becomes a decent, if not good line for the Jaguars.