Grading all 9 picks the Jaguars made in the 2024 NFL Draft

• The Jaguars came out of the 2024 draft with nine selections. Here's a grade for each one of them.
Apr 25, 2024; Detroit, MI, USA; LSU Tigers wide receiver Brian Thomas Jr. poses after being selected
Apr 25, 2024; Detroit, MI, USA; LSU Tigers wide receiver Brian Thomas Jr. poses after being selected / Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
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The Jacksonville Jaguars spent several months preparing for the 2024 NFL Draft. All that time and effort paid off as they came out with what appears to be a promising haul. They began the process with eight picks but finished with an extra one (and two next year) when they traded down six spots with the Minnesota Vikings in the first round.

Surprisingly, the Jags didn't make any other trades the rest of the way. Overall, the Jags' 2024 class looks promising, but how does each pick stack up individually? Here's a grade for each one of them.

Brian Thomas Jr., WR - Round 1, pick 23

The Jaguars needed help at wide receiver. They could've traded up to get one of the top 3 in the draft but instead chose to move back six spots and take the best one available. That's how Jacksonville ended with Brian Thomas Jr.

Even though Thomas was in the second tier of receivers, he was also projected to go into the first round, so it's hard to say that he was a reach. During four years at LSU, the Louisiana native hauled in 127 receptions for 1,897 yards with 24 touchdowns. His best season came in 2023, when he tallied 68 catches for 1,177 yards and averaged 17.3 yards per reception.

You could argue that the front office should've been more aggressive in their effort to trade up, but they got great value in Thomas. It's true that his route-running must improve, and he needs to do a better job of creating separation. That said, he's a deep threat who can add an element of speed to the offense.

Add the fact that the Jags managed to get three extra selections — one in 2024 and two next year — and it looks like Jacksonville got plenty of bang for the buck.

Grade: A

Maason Smith, DT - Round 2, pick 48

The Jaguars got a bit of a blank stare when they drafted Maason Smith. Mostly because cornerback was the biggest need at the time, and it was a bit odd to see them address another position. However, a closer look shows that they made the right call when they went with the former LSU Tiger.

It took Smith a bit of time to hit his stride, but once he did, he became a game-changer. Last season, he ranked seventh in the SEC with 23 total pressures. While he only logged 2.5 sacks, he's shown pass-rush potential.

At 6'5" and 306 pounds, Smith will most likely start the season behind Arik Armstead and DaVon Hamilton on depth. That will give him ample time to work on his craft, but once he does, he should become a key cog in the defensive line rotation. Based on his upside, it won't be shocking if he joins the starting lineup late in 2024 or next year.

Grade: B