The Jaguars are still in the market for offensive line depth. Will the front office use free agency to find a tackle or two to help with run blocking and pass protection?
Take D.J. Humpries off any potential list the Jacksonville Jaguars may have regarding adding an offensive tackle in free agency this offseason. Humpries signed a three-year, $45-million deal with the Arizona Cardinals, according to NFL.com.
The move means Humphries will remain in Arizona protecting Kyler Murray’s blind side instead of whichever quarterback lines up under center in DUUVAL this coming season. As players come off boards and find deals that are to their liking, how will it affect the Jaguars free agency strategy, especially after the front office which veterans to keep on the roster and who to let go because of salary cap constraints?
“We can be as active as we want to be,” general manager David Caldwell said when he spoke to the media at the Senior Bowl last month.
I suspect the Jaguars will be active in their pursuit of mid-level and low-cost free agents who can improve the offensive and defensive lines and potential add depth at tight end and possibly at running back. The NFL Draft should be geared toward finding defensive help and maybe a playmaker or two.
The Jaguars could still find a premier left tackle to kick Cam Robinson inside to guard if the team does cut Andrew Norwell. I don’t view Robinson as a guard based on his footwork and his less than stellar lower leg strength.
If you read my piece last week on three tackles the team must target here on Black and Teal, then you know who I feel are the best choices from a talent standpoint, but they may not be reasonable from a financial viewpoint.
The Jaguars may change their offensive scheme, which may also change the blocking scheme under offensive line coach George Warhop. There isn’t a lot of flexibility with the roster right now, except maybe at right guard with A.J. Cann and Will Richardson. Richardson, a fourth-round pick two years ago, can play either tackle or inside.
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Jawaan Taylor, the team’s second-round pick last season, was their best lineman and figures to get better this coming year. Depth is certainly a concern as there aren’t enough big bodies who can step in and play at a high level.
One name I did not mention in choosing players the Jaguars could pursue is Joe Thuney of the New England Patriots. Regarded as the best possible free agent on the market, the 27-year-old is entering his prime and should be the object of many teams’ desire to plug and play on the line.
The front office may also be more than ready to use the NFL Draft to find a starter with their 20th pick in the first round or later in rounds 2 or 3.