Here we are at almost exactly one day within the NFL draft and fans everywhere are anticipating what could be a very exciting draft (despite all the CBA chaos and what not). GM’s and owners are preparing to make a few decisions that could potentially take their organizations over the top. Especially organizations like the 8-8 Jaguars who just missed the playoffs last year. Some would argue that they are a year or two away from becoming a playoff contenders which means the Jaguars could find themselves in the post season if they play their cards right in this NFL draft. So with that said who exactly will the Jaguars look to draft come Thursday? That’s a good question. GM Gene Smith has proven to be as unpredictable as they come. One can only guess what he will do when the Jags are on the clock and I’ll do just that.
First of all I’ll start by listing there needs from most pressing to least pressing.
DE,QB,S,LB,WR,CB and an interior OL.
Round 1 (pick #16) Cam Jordan DE(Cal)-Let me first of all say that personally I could see the Jaguars trading down or it’s a small chance the could trade up (which they probably won’t). With a class filled with depth at the QB position I would look to trade down and get maybe Christian Ponder or Colin Kaepernick (both of whom the Jaguars like). However if they stay put I think they should pick Cameron Jordan if he’s there, and I think he will be. Despite the fact I think they are overdue on drafting a QB pick 16 is a little early to do it. I think they will trade up or down to get one later in the draft. Jordan, who is the former teammate of Tyson AluAlu is a great play maker. He would be a steal at pick #16 and the Jaguars community should be elated to get him. Taking him fills a pressing need with a very talented player.Check him out here
Round 2 (pick #49) Martez Wilson MLB (Illinois)-I believe this pick will be packaged to trade up for Ponder or Kaepernick if they don’t get a QB in the first round. However in mock drafts you can’t account for trades. So if they stay put I think they should go with Martez Wilson. I believe if you put a stud LB like Wilson next to Daryl Smith you got a pretty good LB core. Wilson could be the thumper LB that the Jaguars had in Mike Peterson in his prime. I believe with good coaching Wilson could be a great replacement for Morrison. To see Wilson in action click here.
Round 3 (pick #80) Tyler Sash SS (Iowa)-Anyone remember the last great SS to come from Iowa? Yeah that guy that played with the Colts by the name of Bob Sanders.Now I’m not saying Sash is anywhere near the level of Sanders, but he’s a good safety nonetheless. Coming from Iowa one thing I can say is Sash is well coached and was a play maker in Iowa’s defense. As one person described to me on twitter, Sash is a poor man’s Eric Weedle. If that’s the case I’ll gladly take him. Click here for highlights on Sash.
Round 4 (pick #114) Austin Pettis WR (Boise State)-Being that the Jaguars parted ways with Sims-Walker it’s been speculated that they will look to get a replacement. Austin Pettis is much like Sims-Walker IMO. He has nice size and weight. Standing at 6’2 weighing 209. He was very productive at Boise as a possession/red-zone threat receiver which is what MSW was in the Jaguars offense. Click here for highlights of Pettis.
Round 4 (pick #121 from New Orleans) Buster Skrine CB (Tennessee Chattanooga)-With Rashean Mathis slowing down and possibly being moved to S if needed I could see the Jaguars going with a CB in this years draft. I’ve noticed that Gene Smith likes small school prospects in the later rounds so now would be the perfect time to get one that also fills a need. Buster Skrine like Mathis is a small school guy with blazing speed. Along with his most gifted talent (as a KR and a PR) Skrine also is a solid corner who is always around the ball. I’m not saying he can immediately be a starting corner but I believe it’s a possibility he could in a year or two when he adds weight to his frame. Until then Skrine could return punts allowing Mike Thomas to just focus on playing WR. Check out Skrine use his blazing speed here.
Round 5 (pick #147) Justin Rodgers CB (Richmond)-GM Gene Smith likes to draft in pairs so why stop the trend? Although I just mocked Skrine to the Jaguars I could see Gene doing something like this. Rodgers is another small school prospect with good coverage skills. He’s performed well in the East-West Shrine Game and was constantly around the ball. Other than Marvin Austin he might have been the best player at the Shrine game.
Round 6 (pick #182) Ricardo Lockett WR (Fort Valley State)-Another small school guy? Yes another one. This years draft is full of small school talent at the bottom end. I truly believe that some of these prospects could come in and help the Jaguars. Lockett is the perfect blend of speed and size. Weighing 211 lbs and standing at 6’2 Lockett has blazing 4.3 speed. He reminds me of Jason Hill with whom the Jaguars gave a two year contract. If the Jaguars don’t want to resign Hill in the future Lockett would be a perfect replacement. He could also easily overtake Tiquan Underwood as the Jaguars #5 receiver. Until then you have what looks to be a stud receiving core with Mike Thomas and Hill as your starters with Osgood, Pettis, Lockett, Dillard and Underwood all battling for roster spots. Catch a few highlights of Lockett here.