Jaguars go offensive tackle at 25 in BR latest mock draft

Socially distanced Jackosnville Jaguars fans cheer [Bob Self/Florida Times-Union]
Socially distanced Jackosnville Jaguars fans cheer [Bob Self/Florida Times-Union] /

All signs point to the Jacksonville Jaguars taking Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence with the first overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. While there’s no longer any intrigue surrounding the top pick, the chance to choose one of the most talented quarterback prospects in recent years is generating plenty of excitement. On the other hand, it’s less certain whom the Jags will take with their second first-round selection, the 25th overall, but a recent mock predicts they will take an offensive lineman.

The Bleacher Report scouting department recently put together a mock draft, and they project the Jaguars will take USC offensive lineman Alijah Vera-Tucker with the 25th overall pick. They believe that this Jacksonville team needs to add supporting pieces to put Lawrence in a position to succeed. Also, they think that after adding skill position players in free agency, this Jacksonville can afford to take the California native to bolster their offensive line.

"Tucker would give the Jaguars a backup swing tackle for the 2021 season, as well as an heir apparent to Cam Robinson, who was franchise-tagged this offseason."

A four-star recruit out of Bishop O’Dowd High School in Oakland, Vera-Tucker was a backup right guard in 2018 but started 13 games as a left guard in 2019. He once again switched positions in 2020 and played 476 snaps at left tackle. While the USC product may be better suited to play guard at the NFL level, his ability to play line up at different positions would give the Jaguars flexibility.

The Jacksonville Jaguars need to err on the side of caution.

Left tackle Cam Robinson has been inconsistent throughout his career and while the Jags expect him to turn the corner in 2021, it would be a good idea to have a fallback in case he doesn’t. Then, there’s right tackle Jawaan Taylor, who underperformed in 2020 after a promising rookie campaign in 2019. While the former second-round pick should get back on track this season, Vera-Tucker would provide insurance in case he or Robinson falter.

Heading into the draft, the Jaguars’ biggest needs are quarterback and tight end but they will address the former with the top pick and can wait until the second round to take care of the latter. For that reason, they can afford to take different paths with their second first-round pick.

Drafting Vera-Tucker with the 25th overall pick may seem unnecessary, even boring, but the Jaguars need to infuse their roster with talent and if the former Trojans offensive lineman is their best prospect left on their board when they’re on the clock, they should take it.

dark. Next. Jaguars 7-round mock draft: April edition