The Jacksonville Jaguars took defensive end K’Lavon Chaisson with the 20th overall pick of the 2020 NFL Draft with the intention of giving their pass rush a boost. However, the LSU product didn’t have a big impact and ended up being a non-factor last season. However, he has a chance to turn things around in his sophomore campaign.
Chris Roling of Bleacher Report believes Chaisson is one of several second-year players that can avoid the bust label in 2021 after notching just one sack in 2020 and posting a Pro Football Focus overall grade of 49.6. He says that even though the former Tiger played 51 percent of the team’s total snaps on defense, he struggled to apply pressure on a consistent basis.
The Jaguars surely expected more from Chaisson in his rookie campaign. However, he joined a situation that was less than favorable, as the team traded veteran Calais Campbell and defensive end Yannick Ngakoue last offseason. Moreover, defensive end Josh Allen, a 2019 Pro Bowl nod, missed eight games with a knee injury, so Chaisson had additional pressure on his shoulders to perform.
The Jacksonville Jaguars made changes that will benefit K’Lavon Chaisson.
Chaisson had a hard time adjusting to the NFL early in 2020. However, he showed progress later in the season and posted 21 pressures in the last seven games of the season after logging just eight in the first nine. Even though his lone sack came in the season opener, he displayed flashes of the player the Jags projected him to be when they drafted him and should be able to take the next step in 2021 after all the additions Jacksonville made to the defensive front this offseason.
The Jaguars added Roy-Robertson Harris and Jihad Ward in free agency. Moreover, they added UAB EDGE defender in 2021’s draft and Allen should be fully healthy, so Chaisson won’t be the team’s only source of pass-rush, which in turn should help him see more favorable one-on-one matchups.
Chaisson didn’t struggle in 2020 because he lacked talent. In fact, not many players would have been able to thrive in the situation he found himself in last season. On the bright side, the Jaguars have taken the steps to put him in a position to succeed in 2021, don’t be surprised if he has a breakout year and registers double-digit sacks.