No. 2 prospect the Jaguars can draft at No. 1 – Evan Neal, OT.
This has been a busy and productive season for the Jaguars. After a search that lasted more than a month, they chose Doug Pederson to fill the void Urban Meyer left at head coach. The only thing that made this somewhat surprising was the fact that Byron Leftwich was the favorite to land the job for most of the process but Pederson ultimately got it.
A football axiom says football games are won and lost in the trenches and Pederson adheres to this philosophy, telling Hays Carlyon of 1010XL “I believe in throwing the football and I think you throw to score and run to win”. True to this way of thinking, the Jaguars applied the franchise tag on left tackle Cam Robinson and signed right guard Brandon Scherff to a three-year $49.5 million deal.
Having said that, tagging Robinson makes Alabama offensive tackle Evan Neal an unlikely candidate to go first overall. Just a couple of months ago, several mocks had the Jags taking the Florida native with the top pick. However, it’s hard to justify taking him with Robinson on the fold. If the Jaguars hadn’t tagged him, Neal would be the perfect candidate to take over left tackle duties.
Neal routinely dominated opposing defensive linemen during his collegiate career at Alabama. He has the ideal size, athleticism, power, and technique to start at either offensive tackle spot or left guard from Day 1. However, he may be a long shot to go No. 1 overall due to Robinson’s presence. Having said that, he shouldn’t be ruled out as the top pick just yet.