Center might not be a higher need than wide receiver for the Jacksonville Jaguars but they could address either position in the second round of the 2022 NFL Draft. If they opt for a center, Nebraska’s Cam Jurgens could be an option. In fact, Chad Rueter of NFL Media believes he will be their pick with the 33rd overall pick.
Reuter recently put together a four-round mock draft and to nobody’s surprise, he had the Jaguars taking Michigan defensive end Aidan Hutchinson with the first overall pick. A bit less predictable was that Reuter sees Jacksonville taking Cam Jurgens at No. 33. While he doesn’t give an explanation, the selection makes sense.
Jurgens made 31 starts at center for the Cornhuskers after originally committing as a tight end. While he needs to add weight to his frame, his athleticism and technique make him an enticing prospect. The fact that the has only played the position for three years means he might have a pretty high ceiling. Brandon Thorn of the Bleacher Report scouting department thinks Jurgens could be a third-round pick while Tony Pauline of Pro Football Network believes he sees him as a “potential top-60 choice“. Here’s some of what he had to say about the Nebraska product.
"He possesses growth potential and should only get better as he physically matures and adds strength to his game. Jurgens comes with a tremendous amount of upside and will be a steal outside the draft’s initial 75 picks."
Taking a center in the 2nd round wouldn’t be a reach for the Jaguars.
Tyler Linderbaum is the best center prospect in this year’s draft but he might be gone by the time the Jaguars are on the clock with the 33rd overall pick. If he’s there, they should strongly consider selecting him but if he’s not, a likely scenario, Cam Jurgens should then become a realistic possibility.
Tyler Shatley will tentatively start at center for the Jaguars after Brandon Linder announced he’s stepping away from football. However, Shatley isn’t the long-term answer at the position and while he’s proven to be durable and will provide short-term relief, the team’s brass needs to look for potential replacements/upgrades. Dylan Parham and Dohnovan West could be solid options in the third round but if the Jaguars want to target a center at No. 33, Jurgens may be the best non-Linerbaum option available.
The draft is less than a month away and while Hutchinson seems to be a lock to go first overall, it’s hard to tell what the Jaguars will do in the second round. All things considered, taking Jurgens wouldn’t be a bad decision.