Jaguars: This trade proposal for K’Lavon Chaisson doesn’t make sense

Jacksonville Jaguars linebacker K'Lavon Chaisson #45. (Matt Pendleton-USA TODAY Sports)
Jacksonville Jaguars linebacker K'Lavon Chaisson #45. (Matt Pendleton-USA TODAY Sports) /

The Jacksonville Jaguars probably expected more from outside linebacker K’Lavon Chaisson in Year 2. The former first-round pick has been somewhat of a disappointment in 2021 but that doesn’t mean the Jags should give up on him and trade him, especially for someone like New England Patriots wide receiver N’Keil Harry.

Bill Barnwell of ESPN recently put together a list of trade proposals ahead of the 2021 deadline. He suggests the Jaguars trade Chaisson, and a 2023 third-round pick for Harry, a 2022 fourth-round pick, and a 2023 sixth-round selection. Barnwell argues that both players — the two of them former first-round picks — haven’t lived up to expectations and swapping them could help them thrive. Here’s why he thinks the Pats should acquire Chaisson.

"Bill Belichick has a track record of trading for struggling high draft picks on defense and getting the most out of them; Chaisson would be the next in line."

On the other hand, Barnwell believes that Harry’s 6-foot-4 frame could be valuable for the Jaguars. This season, the Arizona State product has appeared in three games and has played 33 percent of New England’s offensive snaps. Meanwhile, Chaisson has played all six games with three starts and appeared in 44 percent of Jacksonville’s defensive snaps.

It’s too early for the Jaguars to give up on K’Lavon Chaisson.

At first sight, trading Chaisson might make sense. After all, you draft a player in the first round to be a difference-maker, not someone in the defensive line rotation. In 24 games, he’s registered 25 total tackles, five tackles for a loss, and just two sacks. However, it’s too early to give up on “Swiper”. He just turned 22 and has shown flashes. Last season, he posted 21 pressures in the last seven games. Although he’s been relatively quiet in 2021, he had a superb performance against the Tennesee Titans in Week 5, logging his first sack of the year, six total tackles, and two tackles for a loss.

Furthermore, Chaisson’s Pro Football Focus overall grade has gone from 49.6 in 2020 to a respectable 58.1 this season. In defensive coordinator Joe Cullen’s scheme he no longer has to line up with his hand on the ground like he did last year and is now rushing the passer from a two-point stance. Maybe the adjustment it’s taking longer than it should but that doesn’t mean he will flop.

The Jaguars definitely need more from Chaisson moving forward. He needs to turn those flashes he’s displayed in the past and become a dominant defender. Having a good performance against the Seattle Seahawks in Week 8 would put any trade chatters to rest. Plus, if Jacksonville really wanted to acquire a wide receiver before the 2021 trade deadline, there are several choices better than Harry.

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