3 observations on the Jacksonville Jaguars early free-agency frenzy

• The Jaguars are off to a promising start to free agency, and here are three takeaways from their early moves.

Oct 30, 2022; London, United Kingdom; Jacksonville Jaguars general manager Trent Baalke reacts
Oct 30, 2022; London, United Kingdom; Jacksonville Jaguars general manager Trent Baalke reacts / Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
facebooktwitterreddit
Prev
3 of 3
Next

1. The Jaguars could go "best player available" in the draft

All things considered, the Jaguars have had a productive free-agency period but they still have a handful of needs to address. The most important one may be the interior defensive line but there are a few others.

After releasing Folorunso Fatukasi, the Jaguars need to bring in a defensive tackle. The best ones in free agency are already taken, so maybe they'll wait until the draft to acquire one. Byron Murphy II at No. 17 would be great but there will be other enticing prospects (Braden Fiske, Mekhi Wingo) in later rounds.

The Jags also need to find a long-term answer at cornerback. Even though they signed Ronald Darby in free agency, he's more of a temporary fix. On top of that, Tyson Campbell is set to become a free agent in 2025. When you take into account that he may not be a good fit in defensive coordinator Ryan Nielsen's system, the team's brass may prioritize the position in the early rounds of the draft.

Fortunately for the Jags, this year's cornerback class will be stacked, so they come out of Day 2 with a pretty good one. On the other hand, they also need to bolster the pass rush. Travon Walker and Josh Allen give Jacksonville a dynamic tandem but they need a No. 3 that can spell them from time to time.

The Jags could bring back either K'Lavon Chaisson or Dawuane Smoot to round out their rotation but they may be better off waiting until the draft. At No. 17, they could be in a position to take Dallas Turner, Chop Robinson, or Laiatu Latu.

Either way, Jacksonville can take several paths in the first round, and that will be possible because they've filled several holes in free agency.

Here are more stories from Black & Teal:

manual