With the Jacksonville Jaguars’ team needs heading into the draft passing on a right tackle in the early rounds make sense. Whether it’s because you want West Virginia quarterback Geno Smith and a pass rusher, because you want to rebuild the defense, or because you value a different position (guard) on the offensive line, right tackle seems like the odd position out. Fortunately the NFL has free agency. There a couple of good prospects that the Jags could take a swing at if they want to solve the void on the right side of the line.
Gosder Cherilus, RT, Detroit Lions
- The Lions have a suitable replacement (Riley Reiff) for Cherilus, so it wouldn’t be shocking to see them let him walk. Cherlius had Regenokine Therapy on his knee in January, so it seems even more likely that the team may just abandon him and let him go to someone else. If the Jags are looking for value, Cherilus (Pro Football Focus’ second ranked right tackle) could have a resurgence in a new location and for cheap.
Andre Smith, RT, Cincinnati Bengals
- PFF’s top ranked right tackle, Smith will be more expensive and more sought after than Cherilus. Smith is expected to test free agency, but it would be shocking if the Bengals didn’t saddle up and pay him. He would be a big upgrade over Cameron Bradfield, but it seems unlikely that the Jags are willing to shell out the kind of money Smith will be looking for.
The Jags aren’t looking to spend a whole lot of money during free agency, so Cherilus seems like the likely option, assuming they turn to free agency and not the draft. While it would be pleasant to see the team make a play for someone as talented as Smith, it’s doubtful that GM Dave Caldwell suddenly changes his stance on being a big player during 2013’s free agency period. I would love to see a quality tackle brought in and Cherilus should be considered, but really anybody could be an improvement over the Guy Whimper/Cameron Bradfield experiment from 2012.
– Luke N. Sims
You can also find me on Twitter @LukeNSims