In my previous articles, I gave away my grades for 1st round prospects and then wrote about prospects I would like too see put on the Jaguars hat on the 2nd day. But the Draft is a three day event and you can still find plenty of hidden gems in Round 4-7. I have assembled four names from Division I prospects (mostly for Round 4) and four small school prospects, since GM Gene Smith loves to look around in the lower divisions. Check them out…
Round 4 -5 (& Division 1) prospects:
Thanks to a pre-draft trade with the Oakland Raiders (for Quentin Groves) the Jaguars have an extra 5th round pick, which they traded to the New Orleans Saints (used to selected Boston College C Matt Tennant) on draft Day for a 4th round pick this year, Jacksonville has not one, but two draft picks in the 4th round. Here are four players who I think are worthy of one of those picks:
- Chris Culliver, DB – South Carolina
This prospect is a very interesting one. He surely would have been a a Day 2 prospect, but he suffered a torn pectoral muscle against Tennessee last October, which kept him out of action. He ran an official 4.40 40-yard dash at the Combine – eighth-fastest of all participants and shows me he is fully recovered from that injury. I believe Culliver had caught someone in the Jaguars organization’s eye and is the reason Jacksonville sent scouts to South Carolina games and even practices early last season. And what’s not to like about him? His athleticism and overall body control are outstanding. He was a converted wide receiver, so I imagine his ball skills are completely fine as well. He is also a senior, who played in the SEC all 4 years. If the Jaguars cannot draft Rahim Moore in the earlier rounds and Culliver is still there when they pick first in the 4th round, I say pull the trigger on him.
- Vincent Brown, WR – San Diego State
Although there are some rumors that the Jaguars will draft a WR early (2nd round) who can complete the current corps, I think Gene Smith will again to the middle rounds for a new wideout. If he does, I think there’s a good chance he selects this prospect. When asked who the most impressive player at the Senior Bowl was, Nevada QB Collin Kaepernick said, “Vincent Brown, he was always open on the field.” Sounds great to me. He is a productive WR, who can be an outside receiver or in the slot. A sure handed, very productive who gives you great effort as a blocker as well. Not to mention he is a senior. If he is there still in the 4th round, I say pull the trigger on him as well. I would be 100% satisfied with a Culliver-Brown selection in Round 4!
- Mark Herzlich, LB – Boston College
You want to draft a great story (and a possibly great player)? Here is your guy. Herzlich is a bone cancer survivor.Draft him and your team gets a tireless player with great football IQ and natural instinct at the position. He is a natural leader with very high character, who also can rush the passer effectively and make the play all over the field. He is a picture-perfect Gene Smith type of player! Before his cancer was announced, everybody thought he would be a Top 10 pick coming out. Now it seems he is fully healthy again; he played with a little rust in his ’10 campaign, but he played better and better as the season concluded. If he can stay healthy, he will be a steal, because right now he is a late round prospect. I say a 4th round pick is worth the gamble on this guy. But if he is still there in the 5th, the Jaguars MUST make a move and select him.
- Cliff Matthews DE South Carolina
If the Jaguars have still not selected a DE by Round 4 or 5, then here is a good offer to you: Cliff Matthews. As I mentioned, the Jaguars saw the players from South Carolina many times last year. And unlike Culliver, Matthews played the entire season. In fact he holds the school record for career starts (46) for the Gamecocks. Of course, that means he is a senior. He is built more as a pass rusher and has good speed, long arms, and a quick first step. Also, he is a hard worker with a great motor and does not miss tackles. The reason he is just a late round prospect is because he has some trouble against the run and he might need to add some strength. I think the Jaguars can give him a try if they didn’t select a DE until the middle rounds or want to add depth.