If the Jacksonville Jaguars can move down a few spots in the 2022 NFL Draft and acquire a few extra picks, they should do it. One potential trade partner could be the Detroit Lions, who are reportedly interested in selecting Michigan defensive end Aidan Hutchinson. However, swapping draft picks may be a tough feat to pull.
The Lions currently hold the second overall pick in the draft and although they would only need to move one spot to get the No. 1 selection, they would probably have to give up an early-round pick. Back in 2017, the Chicago Bears gave the San Francisco 49ers two third-round picks just to move up one spot in the draft — from third overall to number two. It’s fair to assume the Jags would want a similar package or even Detroit’s other first-round selection (No. 32) in exchange for the top overall. Trevor Sikkema of Pro Football Focus for one would hate to see the Lions move up in the draft, arguing that it would be “counterproductive” for them.
"Moving up to No. 1 would cost the Lions just as much or more, which feels counterproductive for a team that took on Jared Goff’s contract a year ago in exchange for added draft capital. Hutchinson boasts the top PFF pass-rush grade among his classmates this year at 94.3, but the other two edge rushers on PFF’s top-10, Kayvon Thibodeaux and George Karlaftis, also posted elite pass rush grades above 90.0."
The Lions acquired the 32nd overall pick in this year’s draft, along with a first-round selection in 2023 and a third-rounder, from the Los Angeles Rams when they exchanged Matthew Stafford for Jared Goff last offseason.
The Jaguars may not find many teams willing to move up in the draft.
Aidan Hutchinson is arguably the best pass rusher in this year’s draft but it doesn’t make sense for the Lions to part ways with so many resources just to get him. Is the gap between him and Travon Walker or Kayvon Thibodeaux that wide? Precisely because there are different opinions about the top edge defenders in this year’s class, the Jaguars could easily trade down a few spots and still land a pretty good one.
Keep in mind that this isn’t a particularly good year to trade up in the top 10. Last year, Trevor Lawrence was the consensus No. 1 pick but this draft doesn’t have a quarterback prospect of the same caliber. Unless a team gets angsty, it’s hard to imagine anyone trying to aggressively trade up. The New York Giants hold two first-round picks this year and they could try to move up to take a signal-caller. The Carolina Panthers may also be targeting a signal-caller in the draft. Both teams could inquire about the top pick but it’s uncertain if they would put together the kind of trade package that would convince Jacksonville to part ways with the top pick.
The Jaguars should definitely trade down if they can but they should only do it, if they are made a good offer, something that may not happen.