On the last day of February, the Jacksonville Jaguars checked off one of their offseason priorities by re-signing veteran offensive lineman Tyler Shatley to a two-year deal, according to NFL Network's Tom Pelissero. The two sides came to terms on a two-year, $6.8 million deal with $2.35 million guaranteed.
The Jaguars were hoping to re-sign Shatley, whose versatility and leadership skills have are valued by the organization. A former undrafted rookie, Shatley has spent his entire in Jacksonville and has become a valuable part of the offense over the past two seasons. He started 18 games over the past two seasons after making 15 starts during his first six seasons combined.
New Jaguars coach Doug Pederson clearly believes Shatley is part of the solution as it relates to protecting Trevor Lawrence, who was sacked 32 times during his rookie season. While Shatley will remain in Jacksonville, fellow Jaguars linemen Cam Robinson, Andrew Norwell and A.J. Cann are each slated to enter free agency when the new league year begins on March 16.
Given their estimated cap space (which is currently around $57 million), the Jaguars may be in play to sign one of the top-available linemen during free agency. The Jaguars may also use the No. 1 overall pick to select NC State lineman Ikem Ekwonu, which is exactly what our four CBS Sports NFL Draft experts believe Jacksonville will do with the top pick.
It was a challenging rookie season for Lawrence, the No. 1 overall pick in last year's draft. The bottom fell out on the Jaguars, who fired coach Urban Meyer after a 2-11 start. Jacksonville has replaced Meyer with Pederson, who four years ago led the Eagles to the franchise's first Super Bowl victory.
"I really like him," Lawrence said of Pederson during a recent interview with CBS Sports' Pete Prisco. "I'm really excited. I'm really excited for the future. I've spoken with him a couple of times, really just impressed by who he is. I think, personality-wise, we're going to gel really well. I think we're pretty similar. Just knowing he played the position. He's an offensive guy. Really did a great job in Philly, especially early on. I was really impressed by that. We talked ball a little bit; really think we're on the same page.
"I'm excited to get back to work, learn this new system, start clicking with the guys and get ready for the season."
Lawrence said that being able to consistently play at a high level while executing situational football were the biggest differences between college and the pros. While he acknowledged that he could have done better at both, Lawrence did manage to have success at various points in the season. He helped lead Jacksonville to wins over three teams that finished with winning records. The Jaguars ended the season with a 26-11 win over the Colts that knocked Indianapolis out of playoff contention.
Individually, Lawrence finished as the Jaguars' second-leading rusher. He also finished with the 11th most passing yards of any rookie in NFL history, just behind Kyler Murray and Dak Prescott and just ahead of Jim Kelly and Matt Ryan. Lawrence is hoping to use last year's trials and tribulations as a learning experience for the rest of his career. He is hoping that the 2022 Jaguars can mimic the success that Joe Burrow and the Bengals enjoyed this past season after Cincinnati won just four games during the 2020 campaign.
"It was tough. Definitely something you never expect going into your rookie year," Lawrence said of the 2021 season. "You get drafted and you're going to this new team and you expect everything to be great and have a good year and for everything to be smooth. That really wasn't the case for us. Little bit of adversity throughout the season and just learning how to deal with that.
"For me, just trying to be same guy every day. Try to be consistent, one for myself to keep me in the mental space I need to be in to do my best but also for my teammates. Trying to be that leader and be the same guy every day. I think that's really important. That was something that I learned a lot about this season. ... It's definitely going to help me moving forward and help our team. I'm excited to have a better season next year and use all those things that we learned from to make us better."