3 players the Jaguars could have taken instead of Luke Fortner in the 2022 NFL Draft

• The Jaguars expected Luke Fortner to improve in Year 2

• Fortner has instead regressed and left a bit to be desired

• Here are 3 player the Jags could've drafted instead

Jacksonville Jaguars center Luke Fortner (79) stretches during training camp Monday, Aug. 7, 2023 at
Jacksonville Jaguars center Luke Fortner (79) stretches during training camp Monday, Aug. 7, 2023 at / Corey Perrine/Florida Times-Union / USA
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3. Cam Jurgens, center

Brandon Linder, a long-time mainstay in the offensive trenches, retired after the 2021 season, so it made that the Jags wanted to find his replacement in the draft. Having taken Travon Walker first overall, they might've thought it wasn't worth tradind back to the first round to select Tyler Linderbaum, who went to the Baltimore Ravens at No. 25.

The Jags drafted Devin Lloyd two picks later and they made their next selection until the third round, when they chose Luke Fortner. However, nothing was stopping them from trading back into the second round to land Cam Jurgens, whom the Philadelphia Eagles took with the 51st pick.

While Philly had Jason Kelce in place, they didn't want to wait until he hung up his cleats to look for his heir apparent. In Jurgens, they saw a player who could provide stability at center for year to come. However, the Eagles had to put off their plan with Kelce postponing his retirement.

With Kelce in the fold, Jurgens saw minimal playing time as a rookie. That said, he flashed in the preseason, and learning behind Kelce might been the best for Jurgens in the long run. Kelce ultimately returned in 2023, so Jurgens moved to right guard, where he's shown promise.

This season, Jurgens' given up a healthy 18 total pressures and no sacks on 362 pass-blocking snaps. Although he sat out a few games with a knee injury, he hasn't missed a beat and has picked up where he left off.

It's hard to tell if Jurgens will move to center once Kelce retires given how he's performed at right guard. What's certain is that his flexibility to line up at different spots on the interior line would've been welcomed in Jacksonville.