SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 Sports) – Devin Lloyd was simply the best linebacker in Utah history. The 2021 Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year was back at Rice-Eccles this past weekend for the first since becoming a first round draft pick by the Jacksonville Jaguars.
“This is my first time back in Utah,” Lloyd said during the Arizona State game. “I went to the Florida game last year, but this is my first time back. It’s just great to see everybody once again and reconnect. Obviously it’s great to see us winning too. I love that.”
Lloyd was a huge part of Utah’s first Pac-12 Championship in 2021, and he’s not surprised the program has remained among the top teams in the nation.
“There was always a standard of excellence,” Lloyd said. “Guys always wanted to win. It was an honor to be a part of the first team to get the [Pac-12 Championship] win, and it’s no surprise that they continue to keep getting better and keep excelling as a program.”
Now in his second season as a starting linebacker for the Jaguars, Lloyd runs into former Utes all the time in the NFL.
“That’s just a credit to how we do things at Utah and the standards set by Coach Whitt,” Lloyd said. “Throughout the whole building, there is such an amazing culture. So it’s no surprise when we go to the NFL, do things right and have success.”
With a record of 6-2 and boasting one of the best defenses in the NFL, Lloyd and the Jaguars have big aspirations this year.
“Obviously the Super Bowl is always the goal,” Lloyd said. “That’s our expectation every year. That’s always going to be our ceiling, and we still have so much room to grow. We haven’t played our best football yet.”
After a breakout rookie season in which he had 113 tackles and three interceptions, Lloyd has played in six of the Jaguars’ eight games this year, and has made 48 total tackles.
Wherever he goes, Lloyd is always representing the Utes. He wore his letterman’s jacket to the game against the Sun Devils.
“I still wear my Utah gear,” he said. “This is special though. I don’t just wear this anywhere. In fact, I’m going to put it in a case. It’s really special.”
So is Devin Lloyd.