Things are sounding pretty good out of Jacksonville lately. I count two holes to fill in the draft (and really only need to be in they match BAP): #1 wide receiver and a complement for Jeremy Mincey at defensive end.
Assuming Aaron Kampman doesn’t injure himself again, we’ll only have one hole to really fill in the draft. And that makes Justin Blackmon all the more desirable.
But I’m getting ahead of myself. It’s been a while since Kampman was at top form for an entire season. And he’ll really have to continue rehabbing at a solid pace if he’s to get back on the field for the season opener and to make an impact with the Jaguars. So far, I’m not really seeing that happening.
Here at B&T, we’ve done a really good job of going through the potential picks at defensive end and wide receiver. Seriously, just look at the articles in the past week and you’ll see picks ranging from Melvin Ingram to wide receiver steals in the second round. We believe in being thorough here at B&T.
Yet there’s something we can never really delve into: Gene Smith’s mind.
We don’t know what Gene Smith is going to do. Hell, he could take a running back in the first round and that’d probably make sense in some form of reality. Or he could suddenly trade all of our picks and move up to take Blackmon. Maybe QB Ryan Tannehill will be in a Jags uniform next year? Nobody knows what that cat is thinking.
And that’s a good thing.
With only two real needs heading into the draft, the Jags have set themselves up to be very flexible in their approach. They can do what they want in the first round. Go ahead, gamble, why not? Take an offensive tackle, the more you have the better. Use the final four rounds to pick wide receivers and let them fight it out in camp.
Whatever strategy is taken, we can rest easy knowing that we don’t need to be jumping around in the draft trying to secure “that guy” who is supposed to lead us to the next Superbowl. Gene surprised us last year and grabbed our franchise quarterback. With his rookie season behind him, there’s a lot less pressure on Blaine Gabbert now. Everybody joining this team will be a support player for the offense or the defense. Will they make an impact? I hope so! But there isn’t really going to be a ton of pressure, I feel.
It’s a new year in Jacksonville. A new sense of relief. A new era of success is coming.
And somehow, I’m relaxed and looking forward to greeting it smiling.
- Luke N. Sims