Looking into Jacksonville Jaguars rookie extension candidates and what they might get

• The 2021 draft class has played a huge role in the Jaguars' success the past two years. They're now eligible for extensions. Here's a projection of what they could potentially get.

Former Clemson teammates Travis Etienne and Trevor Lawrence and now Jacksonville Jaguars teammates
Former Clemson teammates Travis Etienne and Trevor Lawrence and now Jacksonville Jaguars teammates / Bob Self via Imagn Content Services, LLC
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3. Left tackle Walker Little, 2nd round, 45th overall

Walker Little will give the Jaguars an interesting decision in 2024. When the Jaguars drafted him, it seemed like they wanted to eventually plug him into the starting lineup but he's not gotten much playing time or earned a defined role the past three seasons. In fact, it doesn't seem like the team's brass knows what to do with him.

Little entered the league with a bit of uncertainty. Following an impressive 2018 campaign, he was projected to eventually go in the top 10 of the draft. However, he missed 2019 with a torn ACL and later opted out of the 2020 season due to the COVID-pandemic. Having not played in nearly two years, the former Arizona Cardinal slid to Round 2 in 2021. Even though he spent most of his rookie season on the sidelines, he flashed when he filled in for Cam Robinson late in the year.

Then in 2022, it appeared as if Little was going to be the starting left tackle but the Jags brought back Robinson on a three-year deal worth $54 million, casting doubt on his role. With Robinson firmly entrenched on the left side, the coaching staff had Little competing with Jawaan Taylor for the right tackle job. He lost but it was a close call. Once again, he hardly saw any playing time early in the season but took over at left tackle when Robinson suffered a meniscus injury.

The 2023 season was more of the same, Little started four games while Robinson served a suspension for violating the league's performance-enhancing drug policy. He played at a high level when he was on the field, and later moved to left guard when Robinson returned to the lineup.

Robinson isn't expected to return in 2024, which means maybe Little will get his chance to start. He's shown enough to make you think he'll do a good job if he plays left tackle full-time. If the Jaguars think he's the long-term answer, they could then give him an extension.

Given that left tackles are paid a premium and the top 14 in the league have a salary of at least $10 million (four are set to make over $20 million in 2024) per year, it would make sense to give Little a short extension that gives him a raise but makes his cap hit manageable the next couple seasons.

Last year, former first-round pick Andre Dillard signed a three-year deal worth $30 million despite the fact that he wasn't a full-time starter during his stint with the Philadelphia Eagles. Perhaps Little could get a bit more.

Projection if a contract gets done in 2024: 2-year extension worth $22 M