3 reasons Jaguars’ Week 18 win was the best of the season
2. The Jaguars get to keep the first overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft.
Late in the 2021 season, the Jaguars looked like a lock to earn the first overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. They went into Week 18 needing either a loss or a loss from the Detriot Lions to clinch it. There was another less likely scenario: a win by both squads, which seemed unlikely as Jacksonville was facing off against a Colts’ team fighting for a playoff spot while Detroit had to take on a talented Green Bay Packers team.
In the end, both the Jags and the Lions took care of business and beat their respective opponents, which helped the former secure the top overall pick in the draft, which they will need to revamp the roster this upcoming offseason.
As impressive as the Jaguars’ win over the Colts, there’s a reason they went 3-14. Beyond Urban Meyer’s inability to lead the team, they lacked playmakers at most positional groups, and having the first overall selection grants them the chance to draft one.
At this point, there are three prospects vying for the top spot in the draft: Defensive end Aidan Hutchinson, offensive tackle Evan Neal, and defensive end Kayvon Thibodeaux. All of them could be instant contributors and quickly make an impact in the NFL, so the Jags could pick any of them and end with a potential building block.
Another possibility is to trade down to hoard extra selections but for that to happen, the Jaguars would need to find a team that is willing to move up, which may be a tough sell in a year where there is no consensus top pick and the quarterback class isn’t particularly strong. Speaking of quarterbacks…