FOXBORO, Mass. — Hours after the Jacksonville Jaguars upset the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday, cornerback Jalen Ramsey guaranteed a Super Bowl victory for the Jags.
The New England Patriots, who stand between Jacksonville and the franchise’s first Super Bowl appearance, respect his opinion.
“Man, that guy’s really good,” Patriots special teams captain Matthew Slater said Monday when asked about Ramsey’s boast. “And he should be confident, because he’s very, very good. The good Lord made that guy, and he said, ‘Let there be corner.’ And there he is. I’d be confident if I were him, as well.”
Ramsey, a first-team All-Pro this season, is one of several standouts on a superb Jaguars defense. The brash 23-year-old declared during a rally Sunday night at EverBank Field that Jacksonville is both “going to the Super Bowl” and “going to win that (expletive).”
“When you have those type of players and that type of defense playing the way that they do, I don’t know who wouldn’t be confident,” Slater said. “When there’s no weakness, especially on the defensive side of the ball, why would you not go out there and play with confidence?”
The Patriots, who are playing in their seventh consecutive AFC Championship Game, are taking a decidedly different approach to the game than that of the confident, loud-mouthed Jags.
“Hey, man, Jalen Ramsey’s a good player,” Patriots safety Duron Harmon said. “He talks a lot of trash. That’s part of his game, and you can’t take that away from him. He’s confident. He should be confident in his team. He has a really good football team. The top two AFC teams are left, and he’s a part of one of them.
“His approach to the game is different than ours, but we can’t knock him for it. We know they’re going to come ready to play, and we’ve just got to match their type of physicality and also just their emotion and their readiness to get ready to play.”