The Jacksonville Jaguars won the NFL Draft in the AFC South, according to NFL.com and their recent grades for the division.
While most prognosticators are predicting a losing season for the Jacksonville Jaguars, the front office is still getting high praise for its draft choices last weekend.
The latest grades come from NFL.com and Dan Parr, who has graded each division in the league, this time making a stop in the AFC South. The Jaguars not only passed, but they received an A- for their efforts with 12 picks that were used mostly to improve a porous defense.
“Jacksonville came into this draft in rebuilding mode and did a fine job of adding a boatload of talent while also filling most of its top needs,” Parr wrote. “There was a glaring void at corner following the trades of Jalen Ramsey and A.J. Bouye, so the Henderson pick made plenty of sense — and the same goes for the [K’Lavon] Chaisson selection, with Yannick Ngakoue wanting out of town. Landing the second-best corner and edge rusher in the draft? That’ll work.”
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Not only did the Jaguars get top players at need positions, but they also got value as well up and down the draft. It’s possible the first four picks could all start. The brain trust led by David Caldwell and Doug Marrone told the media prior to the draft knew they needed to nail their 12 picks and for the majority of the time, they stuck to the defense and added secondary help, which was crucial with the loss of key veterans.
On offense, the Jacksonville Jaguars needed speed on the outside and a playmaker who could stretch the field. Laviska Shenault was a player Caldwell said he would have not had an issue drafting in the first round.
Parr isn’t as high on him as the Jaguars were, but it was still considered a solid pick, as well as other players the team hit on in the middle of the Draft.
“Shenault’s stock took a hit during the evaluation process due to durability concerns. He offers a lot of upside but a lower floor, too. If it all comes together for him, the Jaguars could come away with three first-round values from this draft.”
Parr said DaVon Hamilton went a little earlier than expected but could be Jacksonville’s starter at some point. The Jaguars are also expected to use more of a 3-4 defense this season. He gave the team high marks for offensive lineman Ben Bartch who should play on the offensive plenty this season and could start in 2021.
“GM Dave Caldwell added more depth at positions of need later on Day 3, but the main takeaway here is he ended up tying for the league-high by drafting eight players from NFL Network draft expert Daniel Jeremiah’s top 150 prospects, including three of his top 36. This is good news for Duval County,” Parr added.