We continue our coverage of the mock drafts in the Fansided network today by checking in with our friends over at NFL Spin Zone. While plenty of people have had the Jaguars taking defensive end Jadeveon Clowney over the past few weeks, I still believe Caldwell will take one of the top 3 quarterbacks with the 3rd overall pick. Justen Rosenberg seems to agree, and he has the Jaguars taking a local product in his 3.0 Mock Draft.
Number 3: Jacksonville Jaguars – Blake Bortles QB – Central Florida
The Jacksonville Jaguars have an obvious need at the quarterback position. Instead of selecting Jadeveon Clowney, they will go with Bortles off the simple fact that next year’s quarterback class isn’t as strong. Blaine Gabbert clearly hasn’t panned out as expected and Chad Henne is nothing more than a solid NFL backup. Bortles is practically a hometown kid that could not only win the Jaguars some games, but also sell tickets and ultimately get the fan base excited again.
With Bridgewater off the board after going first overall to the Texans, Justen has the Jaguars taking Bortles over Johnny Manziel. The logic of selling tickets and getting the fanbase excited because he’s a “hometown kid” is flawed and downright wrong, but the selection is valid nonetheless.
I like Justen’s thinking in that there is no reason to assume next year’s quarterback class will be better. Every year fans talk themselves out of the top quarterbacks due to one or two flaws brought up by draftniks, but there’s no chance of finding a franchise QB if you never take one.
In this situation, David Caldwell will have his pick between Bortles and Manziel. While Justen chose to go with Bortles, there’s no reason currently to think Caldwell prefers one or the other. Both seem to fit the mold of a mobile quarterback who can make things happen outside the pocket, and the interview process during the combine and pro days will likely have a huge impact on separating the top 3 quarterback prospects.
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