Jaguars 2019 NFL Draft: What we know now
By David Levin
We are only hours away from the NFL Draft. The Jacksonville Jaguars and the rest of the NFL are anxiously awaiting their turn to make their first selection.
I don’t know if this is a hot take or not, but I’m little bit excited about the NFL Draft. What will the Jacksonville Jaguars do to help change their fortunes in the next three days? Are there players out there in the draft board who will come in and make an immediate impact? Will there be a surprise or two?
Most of all, can fans look back on this draft in couple of years and know the front office did their best and made the right calls? This year in particular is crucial to the short-term future of this franchise. However you want to spin this, every pick is critical. Every move made is strategic. A draft class like last season wouldn’t be catastrophic, but it could limit progress this season.
The Jaguars as an organization cannot afford another setback. There is a sign inside the inner workings of TIAA Bank Field that reads, “Win Today.” The Jaguars must win this draft. While there are some uncertainties with how this all will shake out, here are a few things we already know before the first pick is made this evening.
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The Jaguars don’t need a quarterback… For now – That’s not to say that they won’t draft a developmental quarterback, but the need is not pressing at the moment.
The Jaguars did the right thing by signing Nick Foles this off-season, but they still could use somebody to bring in and develop for the future. Cody Kessler is not going to be the answer down the line and should Foles go down with an injury, this team could be in trouble once again.
The Jaguars could use one of their two third-round picks to find a signal caller. Also, their lack of “need” means other teams looking to find their franchise player could make a push for a trade before the team picks in the first round on Thursday night.
Someone like Will Grier, should he be available with the 69th or 98th pick, could become quite attractive to this franchise
Depth at safety is a concern – The Jaguars may have numbers in terms of players who can play the safety position on the roster, but this unit is not as strong as it was at this time last season.
I asked Coughlin if the team would look to add a safety in the draft because of the lack of depth. He did give the impression that it is something that the team is considering.
Ronnie Harrison and Jarrod Wilson would open the season as the starters if they played tomorrow. Harrison looked the part when he took over for Barry Church late in 2018, Wilson still has a few questions to answer. David Caldwell did say his play last year was one of the reasons why they signed him to a contract extension, but he’s not a pro bowl type player.
I could see the Jaguars reaching for this position as early as the third round, but more likely the fourth round or later. They do have to find at least one more person to add to the mix in training camp.
Running back may not be on the list of needs for this team – One of the questions that was asked of Tom Coughlin on Monday what is the status of Leonard Fournette. After an off-season that has been, shall we say “interesting” the third year back came to the teams voluntary off-season program ready to work.
Coughlin has been candid about the former LSU star and his need to become a better player. His arrest this month aside, it appears that Fournette is ready to take a more significant role with this team.
The Jaguars signed Benny Cunningham and Alfred Blue this off-season to add depth to the position, but it will still be for net who gets the lion share of the carries.
"As Coughlin said on Monday at the Pre-Draft Luncheon, “Leonard is here. He is working hard. He has done a lot to put himself in the type of condition that he wants to be in at this point in the offseason. I just asked him to go to work.”"