3. The Jaguars shouldn’t shy away from Kayvon Thibodeaux
All of Thibodeaux’s talent and potential aside, one common notion that’s made its way around the NFL is regarding his attitude. Several NFL personalities, including Rich Eisen and Peter Schrager, have alluded to how the former Oregon Duck’s pre-draft process has hurt his stock. Thibodeaux’s NFL Combine gave some a puzzling impression of the player. Why didn’t he make the most of the event?
Another issue has been what he has said publicly. In particular, he’s been on record stating that “there’s nothing a coach can teach me.” It can be argued this level of confidence can be a red flag when combined with comparisons with Jadeveon Clowney, who isn’t exactly the best player you’d want to be measured against in the grand scheme of things. By the same token, his effort on the field can’t be questioned, Clowney comparisons aside.
According to Schrager, Thibodeaux’s choice of Oregon instead of Alabama was based on his desire to one day be successful outside of football instead of trying to win championships. Obviously, many scouts who prefer their prospects to have football on their minds 24/7 surely didn’t like any of this.
At the end of the day, players are evolving just like the world around them has changed. This isn’t the 1990s anymore. Social media, NFTs, and self-branding are what’s on the minds of many youngsters these days, but that doesn’t mean they don’t want to dominate on the field. Trevor Lawrence received similar criticism and, going into Year 2, it’s almost been forgotten. Thibodeaux simply reflects the time that we’re currently living in, but his talents are far too great for the Jaguars to pass up on.