The Jacksonville Jaguars are 2-5 as they start off their bye week, but they are firmly in the thick of the playoff race. Blessed with a historically bad division and only one game behind the fledgling Indianapolis Colts for first place in the AFC South, the Jaguars can actually focus on making a postseason push for the first time in a long time.
While the playoffs may seem like a realistic possibility for some, there are still plenty of people who view the Jaguars as one of the worst teams in the entire league. Consequently, they are selecting near the top of several 2016 NFL Mock Drafts, including the one made by the folks over at FanSided. Here’s who they have the Jaguars taking 6th overall in their latest mock:
"6. Jacksonville Jaguars"
"OT LAREMY TUNSIL, 6’5 305 lbs, Ole MissWhen the Jacksonville Jaguars drafted Blake Bortles to be their franchise quarterback of the future, one thing that was understood was that it was going to take some time to build around him. Of course, when you talk about building a team around a franchis6e quarterback, you have to take into consideration that he needs some protection up front, which is where Laremy Tunsil come in.Tunsil was highly touted coming out of high school and he has lived up to the hype at Ole Miss thus far. NCAA issues that have kept him off the field aside, when he is on the field there are few offensive tackles in the country that can get the job done like he coul. Right off the bat when he joins the Jaguars, he’ll instantly become Bortles’ best friend as he keeps him from being on his back and gives him time to get the ball down field to his plethora of receivers.When you watch the Jaguars week in and week out, you can see that there are some holes on this team, but if Tunsil is still sitting here at this spot, then they have no choice but to make the move to get a top-notch bodyguard for Bortles."
Given they way the Jaguars have arrived at their record so far this season, it would be absolutely insane for them to take an offensive tackle this high in the draft. Luke Joeckel has been far from perfect, but he certainly hasn’t been the trainwreck you would be led to believe if you listened to some of the national analysts who aren’t actually watching the 3rd year player. The only player who has been a consistent liability on the offensive line has been left guard Zane Beadles, but the Jaguars have several avenues to try and improve that position next year.
Regardless of where they are picking in next year’s draft, I would be shocked if the Jaguars didn’t go defense in the first round. The Jaguars have plenty of promising young players on offense, but they are in dire need of playmakers on defense. Pairing Dante Fowler Jr.’s return with another young stud on defense would give the Jaguars a huge boost on that side of the ball.
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