No. 1 best decision by the Jaguars – Investing in their front seven.
You have to give the Jaguars’ brass props. Even though Doug Pederson’s got an offensive background, he and general manager Trent Baalke have allocated several resources to the defense, and rightfully so. Last season, they ranked 28th in points allowed and couldn’t stop opposing teams from running the ball at will in the last nine games.
Back in free agency, the Jags signed defensive tackle Folorunso Fatukasi and linebacker Foyesade Oluokun. Later, they added former San Franciso 49ers defensive end Arden Key, who had a career-best 6.5 sacks in 2021 and was asked to line up at multiple spots. The front office wasn’t done though and they selected Georgia defensive lineman Travon Walker with the first overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft. They then double-dipped at linebacker, taking Utah’s Devin Lloyd at No. 27 and Wyoming’s Chad Muma at No. 70, respectively.
Defensive coordinator Mike Caldwell will have more than enough talent to install his scheme in Year 1 and he should pick up where his predecessor, Joe Cullen, left last season. In 2021, the Jags amassed 32 sacks as a team. With all the additions they made this offseason, logging 10 more (42) seems like a realistic goal. Similarly, they ranked 29th in rushing touchdowns allowed. They should be able to move up a few spots.