Jack Jewsbury... Cap'n Jack... The Cap'n. I hope Jack Jewsbury becomes one of those players who's with the Portland Timbers until he retires. Honestly, I think he's become a pivotal leadership figure within the locker room and no matter what he's doing elsewhere, I can't see anything good come from his leaving. But he's no longer captain, or at least not in the traditional sense.
A few weeks ago, prior to the start of the season, head coach Caleb Porter made an odd decision with regards to the club captainship. Will Johnson would become captain of the team on the field and Jack Jewsbury would inherit a new role deemed "Club Captain." Honestly, it left us all a little confused. What does being a "Club Captain" even mean if you're not captaining the team on the field? According to Porter, it all has to do with the veteran leadership he brings, while his skills on the field become diminished over time.
Which leads to a new issue, however, exactly how will Jewsbury feature in this club going forward. At 31 years old, it can be easy to see how he might only have a few years left to play, and that's dependent on just how many injuries he can sustain. Some players can go until 39. Others are forced to stop much earlier.
His new role, which we saw last week against the Seattle Sounders, saw Jewsbury sitting deep in the defensive midfielder section of a 4-5-1 formation. It was a bit of a departure from his usual role.
"We've worked on different formations, different personnel in there, and that's a position in that holding midfield spot right in front of the center backs that I feel comfortable with," Jewsbury said. "It was one that we kind of thought would help put out some fires defensively."
And overall it worked fairly well. Jewsbury had what many would consider to be a solid game, if not anything more than that. Certainly the Portland Timbers' defense needs a bit more work so putting Jewsbury back there to help shore it up is a welcome sight.
Still, as the Timbers begin to focus more on defense, it makes me wonder if they'll end up becoming a low-scoring defensive side instead of the attacking creative side we've all seen before. I guess we'll just have to wait and see.
What do you think of Jewsbury's role on and off the field? Do you want him moved? Benched? Put back into his former position?