5 positions the Jaguars must address in the 2022 NFL Draft
No. 3 position the Jaguars must address in the draft – Left guard.
The Jaguars showed they’re committed to protecting Trevor Lawrence when they signed right guard Brandon Scherff to a three-year deal worth $49.5 million in free agency. However, they could also upgrade the left guard spot.
Just two days before the draft, reports about head coach Doug Pederson wanting the Jaguars to take North Carolina Ikem Ekwonu at No. 1 surfaced. While Ekwonu would be a terrific addition to Jacksonville’s offensive line, using the top pick on a guard would be highly questionable. It would make a bit of sense if the team’s brass eventually moved Ekwonu to left tackle but that seems unlikely with Cam Robinson close to striking a long-term deal.
Still, the Jags need to draft someone that can compete with incumbent Ben Bartch for the left guard job. The former St. John Johnny has made 12 starts over the last two seasons and has shown flashes but has also experienced a few bumps along the way, so the Jags are better off adding another guard in the draft.
Kenyon Green of Texas A&M is a realistic option at No. 33 and so is Boston College’s Zion Johnson but if the Jaguars prefer the add a guard later in the draft, they could target Chattanooga’s Cole Strange or Oklahoma’s Marquis Hayes. It’s uncertain how high the Jaguars’ brass is on Bartch but they can’t afford to go into the season with him as the only choice at left guard. Even if he wins the starting job, they would acquire depth at the position.