Jaguars seek more defensive help, sign former Chiefs LB Damien Wilson
With a need to look for more defensive help, the Jaguars added another veteran on Friday with the signing of former Kansas City linebacker Damien Wilson.
Wilson becomes the seventh defensive player the Jaguars have signed since the free agency signing period began on March 17 and they acquired defensive tackle, Malcom Brown, in a trade with the New Orleans Saints.
The Jaguars did not disclose the terms of the contract.
A member of the Chiefs' Super Bowl championship team in 2019, Wilson registered 154 totals in 29 starts after two seasons in Kansas City. He started 13 games last season and registered 73 tackles, which included three tackles for loss.
In the Chiefs' 31-9 loss to Tampa Bay in the Super Bowl LV, Wilson led the Chiefs with 10 tackles, six solos.
A fourth-round pick in 2015, Wilson played his first four seasons in the league with the Dallas Cowboys. In 93 career games, Wilson has 275 tackles and four sacks.
Where will he play?
Wilson played both Will and Sam outside linebacker positions for the Chiefs, starting all 16 games in 2019 on their Super Bowl-winning team. He can also play inside linebacker. The Jaguars want more competition at its linebacker positions, including middle linebacker with Joe Schobert. The Jaguars likely pursued Wilson because of the preference for assistant head coach/linebackers Charlie Strong and outside linebackers coach Zachary Orr to get a proven veteran run-stopping linebacker on the roster to improve their overall defense.
The Jaguars allowed third-most rushing yards per game (153.3), along with surrendering a franchise-record 30.8 points per game last season.
Under new defensive coordinator Joe Cullen, the Jaguars are expected to switch to a 3-4 defensive scheme.
The Jaguars brought Wilson in for a visit this week before extending him a contract. Wilson now joins former Seattle Seahawks cornerback Shaquill Griffin, Chicago Bears defensive end Roy Robertson-Harris, former Baltimore Ravens defensive end Jihad Ward, former Los Angeles Chargers safety Kayshawn Jenkins, former Philadelphia Eagles safety/special teams player Rudy Ford and Brown who all have joined the Jaguars to help improve their defense.
Where is he from?
Wilson is originally from Gloster, Miss., and attended Amite County High School in Liberty, Miss. He transferred to the University of Minnesota (2013-14) after beginning his college career at Alcorn State. In 26 games (24 starts) for Minnesota, he registered 197 tackles and 5.0 sacks, including a team-leading 119 tackles as a senior. In 2014, Wilson led Minnesota in tackles (119), tackles for loss (4.5), and sacks (4.0) en route to First Team All Big-Ten honors.