4. Shaquill Griffin – Jacksonville Jaguars cornerback
The Jaguars led the NFL in cap space this offseason. Although they focused on adding depth to the roster, they did hand out a few big contracts, including that of former Seattle Seahawks cornerback Shaquill Griffin. The 2017 third-round pick signed a three-year deal worth $40 million, so it’s reasonable to think the team’s brass expects him to play at a high level in 2021.
Griffin isn’t a shutdown corner but he doesn’t have to be one in Jacksonville. The Jags want him to be the leader of a secondary that had a hard time stopping opposing teams from scoring at ease last season. The Central Florida product has allowed a completion percentage of 57.1 or higher over the last three seasons. Moreover, he’s logged just six interceptions during his four-year career.
The other side of the coin is that Griffin earned a Pro Bowl designation in 2019 even though he didn’t record a single interception. Also, he posted a Pro Football Focus overall grade of 77.0,13th-best among cornerbacks in the league, and gave up a 57.1 percent completion rate.
If that wasn’t enough, Griffin’s tackling improved last season. He missed just four tackles in 2020 after missing ten in each of the two previous seasons. If he can improve his interception totals and keep his completion percentage rate under 55.0, he could make the second Pro Bowl of his career. Don’t be surprised if Griffin has a career year in defensive coordinator Joe Cullen’s scheme.