New threat to steal Jaguars' draft targets emerges after Stefon Diggs trade

• The Stefon Diggs trade could impact the Jaguars in Round 1 of the 2024 NFL Draft.
Jan 21, 2024; Orchard Park, New York, USA; Buffalo Bills wide receiver Stefon Diggs (14) reacts
Jan 21, 2024; Orchard Park, New York, USA; Buffalo Bills wide receiver Stefon Diggs (14) reacts / Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Wide receiver remains a need for the Jacksonville Jaguars ahead of the 2024 NFL Draft. With the No. 17 pick, they'll be in a position to take one of the top prospects even if the big three are gone. That said, a potential threat that could take away their targets has emerged after the Stefon Diggs trade.

After trading Diggs for a second-round, the Buffalo Bills are in dire need of receiver help. This wouldn't be an issue if they had in-house options to replace the four-time Pro Bowl nod. However, four of their top five receivers from last year are gone, including Gabe Davis.

Bills general manager Billy Beane conceded that the roster isn't probably better after trading Diggs but refused to catalog the move as the beginning of a rebuild.

Without a viable receiver, Buffalo may be pressed to draft a receiver in the first round. Heck, nobody would bat an eye if they either used their first two draft picks on the position or put a trade package to move up from No. 28. That wouldn't be great news for the Jags.

Buffalo currently holds picks 28 and 60. The second-rounder they got in exchange for Diggs is for 2025, but they could still use it as ammo. For the sake of argument, let's say they traded their first and one of their fourth-round selections — they have two — this year, their second next year, and move up to No. 13. They could take Brian Thomas Jr. or Keon Coleman. Both of them could be targets for the Jags with pick No. 17.

But if the Bills are truly bold, they could trade their first-round picks this year and next and get to the top 10. They would then be in a position to take whoever's left of the top three receivers in the class, Marvin Harrison Jr., Malik Nabers, and Rome Odunze.

The consensus previously saw Harrison as the top receiver in 2024 but his refusal to work out before the draft may have turned off a few teams. Meanwhile, Nabers might've narrowed down the gap with an outstanding outing at the LSU Pro Day. While Odunze is seen as the third-best, he's projected to go in the top 10, so the Jags may need to trade up if they want to have a shot at landing him.

The Jaguars may need to trade up to prevent the Bills from swooping in

Besides wide receiver, cornerback and the pass rush also remain needs for the Jaguars. They could go cornerback in the first round to try to slow down Diggs and the rest of the Houston Texans' offense. On the other hand, they may decide that the best way to beat their division foes is outscoring them. That may incentivize them to draft a receiver in the first round. That would give them a couple options.

Stay at No. 17 and take Brian Thomas Jr., Keon Coleman, or Adonai Mitchell. All of them are fine receivers with the potential to have an immediate impact. But if the team's brass wants to land one of the big three, they would probably need to move into the top 10. The Chicago Bears could be a willing partner.

The Bears have pretty much earmarked the top pick for Caleb Williams but they also hold the ninth overall selection. They may be open to shop it. If that's the case, the Jaguars could then put together a trade package, maybe their first and second-round picks to move up and take either Odunze or Nabers.

Making that trade would ensure Trevor Lawrence has enough weapons at his disposal. On the other hand, it could make it more difficult for them to bolster their cornerback room or their pass rush, especially if they trade their second rounder. That's why it also makes sense to stay put at No. 17.

Either way, both scenarios deserve consideration, especially after the Stefon Diggs trade. Not only do the Jacksonville Jaguars need to find a way to neutralize him, but they must also be wary of the Buffalo Bills potentially jumping ahead of them in the draft to poach one of their targets.

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