Jacksonville Jaguars get outstanding grade for drafting OT Anton Harrison in Round 1

Jacksonville Jaguars head coach Doug Pederson and general manager Trent Baalke flank first round.
Jacksonville Jaguars head coach Doug Pederson and general manager Trent Baalke flank first round. / Bob Self/Florida Times-Union / USA TODAY

Without a glaring need in the 2023 NFL Draft, there were different paths the Jacksonville Jaguars could have taken in Round 1. In the end, they choose to trade down from No. 24 and take Oklahoma offensive lineman Anton Harrison with the 27th overall selection. The 33rd Team's scouting department believes they made the right choice and gave them an outstanding grade for the pick.

Like other outlets, The 33rd Team assigned grades to every NFL team's draft haul and the Jaguars generally got positive marks for the picks they made this year. In particular, they got an A+ for drafting Harrison in the first round, with The 33rd Team pointing out that he should be able to start from the get-go.

"With the news of Cam Robinson's suspension dropping just hours before the draft, this quickly became a need for the Jaguars. Anton Harrison should be able to plug in and start immediately. He has prototype size, athletic feet, and plays physically, with the ability to move guys in the run game. This is great value for the Jaguars to get a potential franchise left tackle this late in the first round."

The 33rd Team was equally complimentary of Texas A&M defensive back Antonio Johnson, describing him as an "extremely fluid safety prospect who has demonstrated the versatility of modern safeties".

On the other hand, Jacksonville got a B for drafting running back Tank Bigbsy, linebacker Ventrell Miller, outside linebacker Yasir Abdullah, and wide receiver Parker Washington. The rest of the Jaguars picks got a C+ or a C-. Here's their full scouting report of Harrison.

Anton Harrison can be a staple of the Jaguars O-Line for years to come

The Jaguars could have drafted O'Cyrus Torrence in the first or second round to compete with Ben Bartch for the left guard job. Similarly, they could have gone after Cam Smith, Brian Branch, or one of the top cornerback prospects in the class. However, taking Harrison at No. 27 has a chance of having an impact right out of the gate, while giving Trevor Lawrence a blindside protector for the foreseeable future.

Harrison mostly lined up at left tackle at Oklahoma but he could make the switch to the right side if the coaching staff thinks he'll do better there. It will also come down to where they think third-year offensive lineman Walker Little will have the best chance to thrive.

Little, a second-round pick in 2021, has made six starts the last two years, all of them at left tackle. However, he competed with Jawaan Taylor (now with the Kansas City Chiefs) for the right tackle job last offseason and took the battle to the wire.

The Jaguars could give Little the chance to stay on the right side or plug him back in at left tackle, his natural position. Either way, the top brass has options and won't back themselves into the corner. Instead, they'll go with the offensive line combination that gives them the best chance to win games.

It's worth noting that Cam Robinson will most likely start serving his suspension for violations to the league's PED policy at the beginning of the regular season. If both Little and Harrison get on a role, Robinson will stay on the sidelines for the remainder of the year.

Out of all the paths the Jacksonville Jaguars could have taken in the first round of the draft, they ended up choosing the right one with Harrison, who has a shot at becoming a mainstay of their offensive line for years to come.

Next. Jaguars best, worst and most intriguing picks in the 2023 Draft. dark