Would the Jacksonville Jaguars look to add a wide receiver in the 2019 NFL Draft? Is N’Keal Harry the pass catcher that can help this team?
At 3-5 halfway through the season, the Jacksonville Jaguars haven’t lived up to expectations, to say the least. Plagued by injuries, poor quarterback play and a lack of playmakers on the outside, the team is only a couple missteps away from organizing their 2019 draft board. Meanwhile, a dynamic receiver has been garnering national attention in the Valley of the Sun: N’Keal Harry.
Nine games into his junior season at Arizona State University, Harry has tallied 55 receptions for 828 yards and nine touchdowns, while also scoring on a rushing touchdown and 92-yard punt return. This comes after an explosive sophomore season with the Sun Devils in 2017, as Harry accounted for 82 receptions for 1,142 yards and seven touchdowns.
But it’s Harry’s highlight-reel catches that have put him on the map.
At 6’4 and 213 pounds, Harry would bring physical characteristics that the Jaguars haven’t seen in a receiver since Allen Robinson — and then some. But Harry doesn’t lack in athleticism.
Packaged all together, Harry could have the opportunity to blossom into one of the NFL’s premier wide receivers.
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For the Jaguars, Harry is the type of player that can change an offense. Meaning, he can take some pressure off of Leonard Fournette and the running game, bolstering a weak receiving core. Through eight games, the Jaguars’ leading receiver is Dede Westbrook with 485 yards, followed by Donte Moncrief with 379 yards and Keelan Cole with 375 yards. The Jaguars rank around the middle in total receiving yards in the NFL at 15.
Jacksonville’s receivers also have the most drops — by a wide margin — in the NFL with 23, as well as five lost fumbles. Granted the Jaguars’ quarterback play hasn’t been stellar, this wide receiver group hasn’t been helping.
While Marqise Lee went down with a knee injury before the start of the season, Lee only had 702 receiving yards in 2017, only behind Cole who had 748 yards. The Jaguars haven’t had a 1,000-yard receiver since 2015 when Robinson went for 1,400 yards and 14 touchdowns, and Allen Hurns had 1,031 yards and 10 touchdowns.
Jacksonville needs a playmaker like Harry to make the leap on offense, and with a relatively thin group at the position in this year’s draft, the team should consider taking the chance.
Going into week nine the Jaguars have the eighth pick in the 2019 NFL draft. Some will argue the team should use their first round pick on a quarterback, but Jacksonville might elect to go for a player like Teddy Bridgewater or Tyrod Taylor in the offseason and choose to place a dynamic receiver like Harry on the outside. It’s way too early, but mark your calendars for April 25, 2019.