Defensive lineman Calais Campbell’s brief time as a free agent featured some intrigue as initial reports he was headed to Jacksonville were followed by word that the Broncos were making a late push to sign him.
Campbell ultimately wound up with the Jaguars, which led Broncos cornerback Chris Harris to make a Twitter post about players not trying to win a Super Bowl that appeared to be directed at Campbell. Campbell told Robert Klemko of TheMMQB.com that he saw Harris’ tweet and that he believes “the rest of the world doesn’t see Jacksonville the way I do.”
Campbell pointed to the amount of one-score losses the Jaguars picked up last season as a sign that the team is close to breaking through. While the money couldn’t have hurt in the final reckoning, Campbell said that he feels he can play a big role in making that happen.
“Playing with Von Miller was a big temptation,” Campbell said. “He’s going to be a first-ballot Hall of Famer. Playing next to a guy like that is a positive, because you feed off a guy like that. That would have been cool. Also, being home would have been a good situation. But you look at the division the Jaguars are in, the AFC South, and the players they’re bringing in, and I felt like it could be an opportunity to go out there and leave my mark on a young team. I didn’t want to go to Denver and just be one of the guys, which is cool. But I knew in Jacksonville I could add a lot more value.”
The Jaguars also signed cornerback A.J. Bouye and safety Barry Church to a defense that already looked pretty good on paper. It’s not the first time that the Jags have emerged from free agency with optimism, though, and they haven’t been able to keep it up once the games started in the past.