The Jacksonville Jaguars must find a franchise building block with the first overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft. While Michigan defensive end Aidan Hutchinson is the safest choice, Georgia defensive lineman Travon Walker isn’t making things easy due to his immense upside and talent. If the Jags don’t take the former Bulldog at No. 1, he will be in high demand.
Aaron Wilson of Pro Football Network reports the Washington Commanders met with Walker for “extensive chalkboard work“. He also visited clubs with at are picking in the top 6, the Jaguars, the Houston Texans, both New York teams (the Giants and the Jets), and the Carolina Panthers. The Commanders hold the 13th overall pick, so by the time are on the clock, there’s a chance Walker will be gone although they could move up if they find someone willing to trade down.
Jaguars general manager Trent Baalke met with the media Friday and said the Jags have narrowed down the list of options at No. 1 to four players. Wilson says the favorite is Hutchinson but Walker is also getting consideration. Here’s his assessment of the former Georgia standout.
"Because of Walker’s athleticism and eye-catching plays within a strong team defensive concept, he’s in heavy demand. At 6’5″, 272 pounds, Walker ran the 40-yard dash in 4.51 seconds, had a 35-inch vertical leap, a 10’3″ broad jump, and a 6.89 three-cone drill."
Travon Walker has become a realistic choice for the Jaguars at No. 1.
Per Wilson, an NFL executive describes Walker as “an amazing athlete” and “checks a ton of boxes for us. We love him”. He isn’t alone in how he views the Thomaston, Georgia native. Former Jaguars running back and TV analyst Maurice Jones-Drew believes he will go first overall, and so does Peter Schrager of NFL Media.
As John Shipley of Jaguar Report note, Baake “nudged towards taking Walker” and while Hutchinson is still the favorite, nobody should be surprised if Walker is the pick at No. 1. In the end, the draft requires a lot of guesswork and it’s uncertain who will be the better pro. The general manager made an allusion to this during his sitdown with the media and said that if he knew it, “he would go to Las Vegas and lay the money down”.
Ultimately, the Jaguars need to choose the highest-graded player on their draft board, the one they think can help them the most and if Walker is that player, they should go ahead and choose him.