Despite turmoil in Jacksonville, All-Pro Jalen Ramsey says he wants spend career with Jaguars
And the chatty cornerback has a video game to prove it.
“I play Madden all the time. I play with the Jags,” Ramsey said Thursday. “I don’t trade myself. I don’t make any trades on the team. I play with the Jags. I lose a couple times, but I bounce back. I always bounce back. But I play with the Jags.”
Frustration is starting to surface for the Jaguars (3-6), who bolstered big hopes from reaching the AFC title game last year by starting 3-1. They haven’t won since then, and their fifth straight loss last week to the Indianapolis Colts was marked by missed assignments and blown coverages.
At least one of them belonged to Ramsey, the Pro Bowl cornerback who was supposed to drop in coverage and instead played man defense as tight end Eric Ebron ran free for a 53-yard touchdown catch.
The following morning, Ramsey took to Twitter to vent about the negative blowback in Jacksonville.
“When I’m gone from here, y’all gone miss me. I ain’t even trippin,” it said.
Ramsey, a first-round pick in 2016, still has another year on his contract with an option that would take him through 2020. And he hopes it would go longer than that.
“I’ve said multiple times … that I want to play with one team my whole career,” Ramsey said.
He also hasn’t removed the tweet or backed away from it.
Pressed to explain what he meant, Ramsey said it was directed to the “fake fans.”
“We bring some good things,” he said. “And yeah, we slipped up here recently, not executed and played like we know we can. But like, whoever — the fake fans, y’all, whoever — if y’all want to jump ship, then it is what it is. But y’all going to miss us when we either gone or when stuff (is) back popping. We don’t want y’all no more.”
The Jaguars are on the verge of popping themselves out of any shot at the postseason, trailing Houston by three games in the AFC South, winless since Sept. 30. Next up are the Pittsburgh Steelers, whose fifth straight victory was a 55-21 dismantling of the Carolina Panthers a week ago Thursday night.
Ramsey, in an interview with GQ last year, said he was more impressed with receiver Antonio Brown than quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, who he referred to as “decent at best” and that Roethlisberger “really disappointed me” the two times the Jaguars beat the Steelers, including the AFC divisional playoff.
With a chance to return the favor, Roethlisberger didn’t nibble when asked about Ramsey.
“He’s a guy that you have to understand where he is and who he’s covering and be smart,” Roethlisberger said. “I am not going to fear anybody — I don’t care who they are. But you respect it, for sure.”
The trick for Ramsey and the rest of the Jaguars’ secondary is to look smart by knowing who they’re supposed to be covering. Ramsey attributed the blown assignment against the Colts to not hearing the call from the other side of the field.
Whether it’s communication or formation, Ramsey is more interested in a solution.
“Not saying we don’t care about the fans being frustrated, but we’re frustrated in here,” he said. “Y’all think we just walking around and we happy about what’s been happening lately? We’re not. We’re still trying to figure out a way that we can fix it.”
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