The Jacksonville Jaguars can’t give Trent Baalke full draft control
Jacksonville Jaguars general manager Trent Baalke has made it clear that “the draft is the most important element of roster construction,” according to John Oesher at jaguars.com. Baalke has always followed the philosophy of focusing on the draft to build your roster and using free agency to “supplement” it. When it comes to the draft, Baalke says the Jaguars are focused on value rather than needs.
Jaguars: Has this worked well for Baalke in the past?
Not so much. During his tenure as the San Francisco 49ers general manager, Baalke only managed to draft a handful of decent players while the rest were traded away after a short time and/or fizzled out of the league. Whether he had a need-based or value-based approach then, it didn’t work out the best for him.
Baalke may have helped the 49ers reach three straight playoff appearances and one Super Bowl appearance, but he has doesn’t have a great track record when it comes to the draft or developing players. He was at fault for his poor performance as a general manager and this will be the first time he’s held that title since.
When Baalke was hired to be the Jaguar’s new general manager he stated in his introductory press conference that he’s had the opportunity to “look at the business through a different lens.” This should be seen as a positive for Jaguars fans, as Baalke has had time to step away and re-evaluate his approach to general managing.
At the same time, The Jaguars can’t solely rely on Baalke when it comes to making decisions in the 2021 NFL Draft. They have to rely on head coach Urban Meyer and advisors as well. Urban Meyer may be new to the NFL and may not fully understand how it operates, but he knows talent when he sees it.