No. 1 player the Jaguars might regret not drafting: Aidan Hutchinson, DE
From the moment the Jaguars clinched the first overall selection in the 2021 NFL Draft, they knew they would be taking Trevor Lawrence. They still went ahead and performed due diligence but there was always a 99 percent chance the former Clemson Tiger was going to be the choice. On the other hand, selecting edge defender Travon Walker this year wasn’t as clear-cut and it required more research and work.
Most mock drafts at the beginning of the draft had the Jags taking Evan Neal and later Ikem Ekwonu. But even after they signed Cam Robinson, they still had to choose between Aidan Hutchinson and Travon Walker. The former was the more polished pass rusher of the two coming out of college but the latter might have the bigger upside.
During the predraft process, the biggest criticisms surrounding Hutchinson were whether he was a one-year wonder and if he was twitchy enough. However, the Michigan native has all the tangibles to be a dominant pass rusher and while the Jaguars passed up on him, the Detroit Lions wasted no time turning in the card with his name.
The Jaguars think Walker can make the transition to full-time pass rusher, and if he does, they will have a dominant edge defender opposite outside linebacker Josh Allen. But if he struggles to make the necessary adjustments in the pros, observers will second guess their decision to take him and not Hutchinson.