In an interview with 1010XL’s Mia O’Brien on Wednesday, the Jaguars lineman said that he’s ready to play and all he’s waiting for is the green light from the coaches.
“I’m really excited to finally be able to play, it’s already halfway through the season already,” Hamilton said. When asked if he anticipated playing in Pittsburgh, he said “Hopefully, yeah.”
On Oct. 12, the Jaguars opened the 21-day window for Hamilton to practice with the team in his return from the injured reserve. Last week, the defensive tackle was listed as a full participant in practices, but didn’t play in the team’s Week 7 game against the New Orleans Saints.
“It’s been a struggle getting back to where I am right now,” Hamilton told O’Brien. “I’m just so incredibly blessed to be where I am, and to be able to be back with the team and practicing and what not.”
Hamilton, 26, was the Jaguars’ third highest graded defensive starter on Pro Football Focus during the 2022 season behind only Josh Allen and Tyson Campbell. His emergence as a stout presence in the middle of the line earned him a three-year contract extension in the offseason.
In his absence, Jacksonville has managed to be one of the NFL’s best run defenses, holding opposing rushers to just 3.6 yards per carry. The team hasn’t been able to get much interior push against the pass, though.
Only four teams have fewer sacks than the Jaguars and 12.5 of the team’s 13 sacks have come from the team’s four outside linebackers.