Brady Podloski | March 31st, 2020
The Jaguars have a significant number of holes in their roster. The team has to make several decisions that include: What is the identity of the team going forward? Is the team all in on Gardner Minshew II? Does general manager, Dave Caldwell, have to turn the team around this year and get a winning record?
The Jaguars have 12 picks in the 2020 NFL draft and with Caldwell on the “hot seat”, whoever the team picks will come with questions. They’ve acquired depth on defense with linebacker Joe Schobert, defensive tackle Rodney Gunter, and cornerback Rashaan Melvin. Whereas the Jaguars only acquired tight end Tyler Eifert for the offense.
The players picked in the first round need to have an immediate impact if Caldwell wants to keep his job. Caldwell tends to take chances in the other rounds, drafting high upside players who may have some elite traits. Therefore, the players picked all profiles for Caldwell to have liked in previous draft picks, while going offensive heavy early in the draft.
To help with this mock draft, I used the Fanspeak mock draft simulator.
Make sure to check out all of our other NFL team mock drafts here.
Round 1, Pick 9: Jerry Jeudy, WR, Alabama
Jeudy fits as he’s pro ready in terms of polished route running and can make an immediate impact. Jeudy route running skill forces mismatches against slot cornerbacks, as he generates separation quickly, and has the speed to maintain the separation. His best fit is in the slot, running short to intermediate routes where he gets free releases off the line of scrimmage.
Jeudy fits Gruden’s scheme well, where he’s able to be the chain mover on third down and the reliable wide receiver when you need a catch. This pick makes a lot of sense in terms of developing Minshew as well. Quarterback development is tricky, and making the jump to a franchise starter only happens when you have an excellent supporting cast. Wide receiver DJ Chark emerged last year as the only consistent target game to game, meaning the Jaguars need another weapon.
Jerry Jeudy is a human highlight reelpic.twitter.com/JXTjrSZEDG— PFF College (@PFF_College) January 4, 2020
Round 1, Pick 20: Lucas Niang, OT, TCU
Niang is a first-round massive tackle, whose best film was against Chase Young in 2018. His development was hindered by a torn hip labrum in October, which ended his 2019 season. Yet 80% of NFL players who had a hip-related injury or something similar to Niang’s injury were able to return and play at the same level they played at before.
#TCU offensive tackle Lucas Niang, who underwent hip surgery in November, has received positive reports on his hip, source says. No setbacks or issues. Niang re-enters the conversation as one of the top OTs in the class.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) February 26, 2020
Jaguars have a type when it comes to the tackle position, big maulers who can push defenders around. Left tackle Cam Robinson is 320 lbs and 6’6, right tackle Jawaan Taylor is 312 lbs and 6’5, and backup tackle KC McDermott is 311 lbs and 6’5; whereas Niang profiles at 328 lbs and 6’7. Ideally, this pick improves two spots on the offensive line as Robinson would slide inside to guard and Niang takes over at left tackle.
For Caldwell, this pick makes sense as you get a massive player to fix the offensive line, and Niang has a large discount due to his injury. Calwell has a history of taking injury-labeled players in the late first early second round, similar to the picks in Myles Jack and Taylor, both who fell in the draft due to injury concerns.
Round 2, Pick 42: Neville Gallimore, DT, Oklahoma
Gallimore is a high motor defensive tackle who has a huge upside when rushing the passer (kind of sounds like what Taven Bryan was supposed to do). His upside comes from his explosiveness, where he can beat guards and centers with quickness and burst. However, Gallimore is average against the run, and he struggles against double teams and anchoring. Nevertheless, Gallimore’s upside comes from generating an interior pass rush, which the Jaguars lost in Malik Jackson, Calais Campbell, and somewhat in Marcell Dareus.
Round 3, Pick 73: Noah Igbinoghene, CB, Auburn
Fun fact of the day, every corner that Caldwell has drafted or acquired via free agency, has had arm length over 31 inches (with the exception of Jalen Myrick – a seventh-round draft pick). Caldwell’s profile of cornerback is long arms, with the potential to play press. Igbinoghene is raw and has only been playing cornerback for two seasons. He’s a former receiver so high pointing the ball and making interceptions come more natural to him than other cornerbacks. Igbinoghene is better at zone coverage and has the athleticism to develop high-end pressman skills.
Round 4, Pick 116: Kenny Willekes, Edge, Michigan State
Willekes can significantly improve the Jaguars outside run defense, with upside to develop as a pass rusher with his unrelenting play style. He can split time with Dawuane Smoot, both of whom can pick up the slack with Campbell gone. This is another high upside pick who can contribute right away to run defense.
"Not athletic, below-average athleticism for edge rusher"— Kendrick (@kennyw97) March 26, 2020
"Physical tools don't jump off the page"
"Isn't a good athlete"
"Has pedestrian physical gifts”
Shhhh Just watch… pic.twitter.com/LpvLpzBu9C
Round 4, Pick 118: Rashard Lawrence, DT, LSU
Lawrence is a massive run stuffer who could split time with Abry Jones. This pick assists in inside run defense as Lawrence can anchor against the run and take on double teams. I think Lawrence can be a viable starter in the NFL and dominate against the run. As well with this pick, the run defense with Lawrence gets dramatically better and has more depth.
Round 4, Pick 140: Joshua Kelley, RB, UCLA
Kelley screams Jaguars running back; a physical downhill runner who will deliver punishment. His versatility in the passing game is questionable but can be a serviceable backup. This pick is more about the depth and the Jaguars moving on from Leonard Fournette next year.
Round 5, Pick 165: Solomon Kindley, OG, Georgia
Kindley is 6’6 and 330 lbs and fits the Caldwell mold for maulers. Kindley is a development pick who could be a viable guard in the second or third year of his career.
Round 5, Pick 170: Thaddeus Moss, TE, LSU
Moss is a developmental tight end, who has excellent movement skills and decent catching ability. He will struggle with blocking, but this pick is about adding an additional mismatch weapon.
Round 6, Pick 189: Shaquille Quarterman, LB, Miami
Quarterman is a downhill thumper and would be a great fit for the backup to Schobert. He is a sure tackler, and if he can continue to develop pass coverage.
Round 6, Pick 206: Nathan Stanley, QB, Iowa
A quarterback who can compete with Joshua Dobbs for the backup role. Stanley has a cannon for an arm but will miss the touch throws. Stanley represents a long term development project.
Round 7, Pick 223: Jordan Fuller, S, Ohio State
Fuller offers range in a split deep coverage role and puts in lots of effort. His effort would be a dynamic piece on special teams and could possibly edge out Andrew Wingard as a backup safety.
Questions and comments?
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