Jacksonville Jaguars 2014 Free Agent Analysis: Zane Beadles


September 9 2012; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Broncos guard Zane Beadles (68) against the Pittsburgh Steelers at Sports Authority Field. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

The Jacksonville Jaguars were exceedingly active in free agency this offseason thanks to an envious amount of cap space. General manager David Caldwell has done a good job of trimming the fat and taking care of some financial burdens imposed on the franchise by former general manager Gene Smith. After hitting on some key free agent acquisitions in 2013 – Sen’Derrick Marks and Alan Ball being the two most prominent – it’s time to see if any players from this free agent class can be as successful going forward.

Today we take a look at a guy who should come in and be an immediate upgrade in the interior offensive line – guard Zane Beadles.

Drafted in 2010, the same year as the other free agent pickup we analyzed recently, Beadles started playing a bulk of the snaps immediately. Originally drafted in the second round to play right tackle, Beadles moved over to left guard halfway through his rookie season. After a rough couple of years, he found his stride in 2012 when a certain veteran quarterback joined the Denver Broncos. Here’s how he’s looked so far in his career according to Pro Football Focus. The final 3 columns are Pro Football Focus grades.

YearSnapsQB HurryQB HitQB SackPenaltiesRun BlkPass BlkOverall

The Jacksonville Jaguars invested a pretty sizable amount of money into Zane Beadles, so it’s somewhat troublesome to see such a low grade in his second season. It was his first full season starting at left guard, but he also had an interesting situation at quarterback to deal with. After starting two games Kyle Orton was benched for Tim Tebow. What ensued was probably one of the more perplexing regular seasons in NFL history. Tebow was arguably the worst quarterback in the NFL from a traditional standpoint, but he somehow managed to ride a good defense into the postseason. The offense was horrific passing the ball and that is reflected in Beadles’ poor pass blocking grade.

The difference in his grade when Peyton Manning arrived in 2012 is staggering. He went from the 73rd ranked guard in 2011 to the 17th ranked guard in 2012 according to Pro Football Focus. He struggled a bit more in 2013, but he was still serviceable on a team that made it to the Super Bowl.

The Jaguars might have overpaid for Zane Beadles, but it’s a luxury they can more than afford thanks to their salary cap situation. Regardless of the financial details, Beadles should provide an immediate upgrade over Will Rackley who somehow managed an overall -32.7 grade in 2013 according to PFF, good enough for third worst among all guards who played 25% of their team’s snaps.

-Daniel Lago

Yell at me on Twitter @dlago89