The Jacksonville Jaguars made plenty of depth signings and also a few of the splash variety early in free agency. The one that will have the most impact in 2021 might be that of former Seattle Seahawks cornerback Shaquill Griffin. He should quickly become a key cog in a secondary that was in dire need of talent. However, not everybody thinks he will thrive in Jacksonville.
Griffin was one of the top cornerbacks available in the open market and the Jaguars paid him accordingly, giving him a three-year $44.5 million deal with $29 million guaranteed. Chris Roling of Bleacher Report believes the cornerback may not be able to live up to his contract.
Roling argues that coming from a place like the Legend of Boom — the Seahawks Secondary — will create lofty expectations for Griffin and believes that it could be difficult for him to meet them. He brings up the fact the cornerback posted a Pro Football Focus of 64.1 (which is good but not outstanding) and points out he gave up a 62.1 completion percentage rate and six touchdowns last season.
Later, Roling says Griffin still has elite potential but he hasn’t been able to produce. He thinks that he may have a hard time doing it in Jacksonville and believes that the hype surrounding his signing could lead to disappointment.
Shaquill Griffin was one of the Jacksonville Jaguars’ best signings.
Roling may be nitpicking on this one. Even though Griffin’s numbers don’t look great, he was arguably the best cornerback in free agency and his contract could look excessive but the Jags needed to make that kind of investing if they wanted to get better. The draft is important and it should be a team’s main source of talent, but Jacksonville’s roster was devoid of playmakers last year, and the organization aggressively added talent this offseason, which is a good thing.
The Jags knew they need to get better quickly and instead of rebuilding solely through the draft, they took advantage of the vast amount of cap space they had and added talent to position groups that needed it. The cornerback room, in particular, was bare before free agency, but now is in good shape and head coach Urban Meyer is pleased with how it looks. Signing Griffin was an important move, and so was bringing back Sidney Jones and Tre Herndon.
Will Griffin pan out in Jacksonville? The Jaguars’ brass surely hopes so. There’s always a risk of things not working out but this signing is no different from others and it’s too early to know whether the cornerback will succeed. That would be the ideal outcome though.