May 122012
 

Debate the Jacksonville Jaguars offseason needs in The Football Fan Forum 

2010 Preview:

I don’t know how a team makes themselves worse in the draft, but, at least in the short term, they did. Tyson Alualu could be a solid starting caliber player in the future, but for now, he’s a downgrade over veteran John Henderson, who was cut when they drafted Alualu. Their pass defense was atrocious last year on all levels. Their corners couldn’t cover, their safeties couldn’t cover, they had fewer sacks as a team than some individual players had. Aaron Kampman helps, but this is still going to be a very poor defensive squad unable to contain the pass.

Offensively, they should once again be just so so. Maurice Jones Drew is still a monster of a running back, but he was last year and that didn’t help them make 8+ win. It won’t this year either with all of the other teams in the NFL, for the most part, getting better this offseason, unless David Garrard has a great year at quarterback.

Projection: 6-10 4th in AFC South 

Power Ranking: 23 

Last Season: 7-9

Grade:

#10 DT Tyson Alualu (California)

This has to be the most head scratching draft pick I’ve ever seen. I scratched my head so hard when I saw it, that I scratched a hole right through my scalp. The only possible explanation for why the Jaguars would have taken a late 2nd round prospect at 10 is that they reached an agreement with his agent that they would make him the 10th overall pick if he agreed to not demand 10th overall pick money. The Jaguars are in that dire of a financial situation. However, if they were in that dire of a financial situation, why didn’t they just take Tebow. He would have been less of a reach. He would have helped them more than Alualu. And he would have sold tickets. How is Alualu going to help them sell tickets? Who wants to spend money to see Tyson Alualu? The Jaguars may have effectively doomed their team into backruptcy. I can see it now, the 2012 Los Angeles Jaguars (of Anahiem).

Grade: F

#74 DT D’Anthony Smith (Louisiana Tech)

Well, at least they’re consistent. They drafted a 3rd round caliber defensive tackle in the 1st and they took a 3rd round caliber defensive tackle in the 3rd. Is Gene Smith so lazy (or so demotivated by Jack Del Rio) that he can’t even bother to take another position. This is the 3rd straight year they have drafted the same position back-to-back with their first 2 picks and defensive tackle wasn’t even a need heading into draft day. What are they going to do about their awful pass rush and their completely inability to stop anyone through the air? The only reason this isn’t another F is because Smith somewhat fits the draft range.

Grade: D

#143 DE Larry Hart (Central Arkansas)

It’s bad when you use the 143th pick on a player I’ve never heard of. I’d estimated there are about 450 players in this draft class that I have heard of and this guy was not one of them. Per ESPN, he is an undersized defensive end from a small school. They don’t even have any stats from him because no one cares. He fills a need, but how much help is a guy who isn’t very good.

Grade: F

#153 DE Austin Lane (Murray State)

Lane was a 4th round prospect so getting him in the 5th is good, but is Gene Smith incapable of not taking the same position twice in a row. This is the 5th time in the last 3 years he has doubled up on the same position with two back to back picks and the second time he did it with defensive ends.

Grade: A-

#180 RB Deji Karim (Southern Illinois)

Karim is good value at this point and can serve as a backup to Maurice Jones Drew as Rashad Jennings, apparently, was not living up to their standards.

Grade: A

#203 CB Scotty McGee (James Madison)

Finally they focus on the secondary, but McGee should not have been drafted. He’s not worthy of being drafted. He’s a solid kick returner, but won’t help their secondary at all.

Grade: C

Overall:

The Jaguars have effectively screwed themselves over with this draft. They barely upgraded anything. There have been teams that drafted badly this year that only got upgrades at low value positions, but this team didn’t even do that and they didn’t fix their #1 need, selling tickets. The Jaguars had a league low 1 sellout last year. They probably will only have one more next year and that’ll be week 1 when Tim Tebow (who they should have drafted) and the Broncos come into town. They may get another one if the Colts come to town and the Jaguars are playing well (as was the case last year), but this team probably won’t play very well next year.

Grade: F

Key undrafted free agents:

CB Chris Hawkins (LSU)

C John Estes (Hawaii)

OLB Kyle Bosworth (UCLA)

WR Chris McGaha (Arizona State)

OT Kevin Haslam (Rutgers)

FB Jason Harmon (Florida Atlantic)

Positions of need:

Defensive End:

Their secondary got torched every single game last season and I mean every single game. Part of that blame has to fall on their weak cornerbacks, but part of that blame also has to fall on their defensive lineman. In fact, considering their d-line’s 14sacks last season, I’d say more of the blame must be placed there. Derrick Harvey led the team with 2 sacks. This is pathetic, especially for a team that is two years removed from using their first two picks on defensive ends to rush the passer. Derrick Morgan should be heavily considered at 10, assuming they don’t trade down, more on that later.

Signed Aaron Kampman, Drafted Larry Hart (#143), Drafted Austin Lane (#153)

Cornerback:

Of course, when you are as bad as the Jags were against the pass last year, you also have to blame some of the cornerbacks, though they weren’t helped out much by their defensive line. Derex Cox is nothing but a nickel corner in this league and needs to be moved to that position, instead of starting cornerback, ASAP. If they don’t trade down from 10, in state cornerback Joe Haden could be a possibility.

Drafted Scotty McGee (#203) 

Safety:

Again, you can’t just blame the cornerbacks. They traded for Gerald Alexander in the offseason, but he didn’t do much. He really struggled against the pass this year. He could be upgraded.

Defensive Tackle:

They looked better against the run late in the season, but they have yet to find a true replacement for Marcus Stroud since they traded him to the Bills a few years ago. They might use a mid round pick on some depth, at least, at the position.

Drafted Tyson Alualu (#10), Drafted D’Anthony Smith (#74) 

Quarterback:

The Jaguars #1 need this offseason, regardless of position is to figure out some way to sell more tickets next year and that, unfortunately, may mean they draft Tim Tebow. I say unfortunately on many levels. Its unfortunate for the Jags because quarterback isn’t a huge need. Its unfortunate for David Garrard, who doesn’t deserve to lose his job. Its unfortunate for Tim Tebow who would likely be started from week 1 to sell tickets. If this happens, he will fail. I am a huge Tebow supporter, but he is not NFL ready right now. I believe he can learn to be in a year’s time, but not if he starts week 1. However, Tebow to Jacksonville looks pretty inevitable and pretty necessary and for this reason they may trade down. There is no need to take Tebow at 10, not because he doesn’t deserve the slot per se, but because the market for him isn’t very big in the first round. The only other 1st round team I can see taking a shot at Tebow is Minnesota and they don’t draft until 29. However, the Jags can’t pass him up at 10, because there’s a very good chance that he isn’t there when they draft in the 3rd round, which will be the next time they draft. So, I believe they should either trade down from 10 to the mid 20s, Philadelphia might be looking to move up to take Derrick Morgan, and secure a 2nd round pick to help their defense in the process, or, they should trade their 3rd round pick, their 4th round pick, and a future 3rd rounder to move up to the top half of the 2nd round to take Tebow. There is a decent shot he is still there in the top of the 2nd and doing this would allow them to get that big time defensive prospect to help their defense, like Derrick Morgan or Joe Haden.

Wide Receiver:

Torry Holt was recently cut and now they need a replacement opposite Mike Sims Walker. They drafted 2 wide receivers in the mid rounds last year, but if they aren’t sold on either being future starting material, they could target one in free agency this year, though I doubt they can target one through the draft because of their lack of picks.

 

Free agents:

RB Allen Patrick 

WR Torry Holt- signed with Patriots, 1 year 1.6 million

WR Troy Williamson (restricted)- resigned 1 year 1 million

OT Tra Thomas- signed with Chargers 

G Kynan Forney- resigned

C Dennis Norman

DE Reggie Heyward

DT Atiyyah Ellison (restricted)- resigned

DT Montavious Stanley- signed with Dolphins

DT Rob Meier 

DT John Henderson- signed with the Raiders 1 year

OLB Brandon Iwuh- signed with Bears 

OLB Clint Ingram (restricted)- not tendered, signed with Saints

MLB Tim Shaw (restricted)

Offseason moves:

Jaguars cut DE Reggie Hayward

Jaguars acquire G Justin Smiley from Dolphins for 7th-round pick

Jaguars waive RB Allen Patrick

Jaguars sign OLB Teddy Lehman 

Jaguars cut DT John Henderson

Jaguars withdraw tender from OLB Clint Ingram

Jaguars sign MLB Freddie Keiaho

Jaguars cut OLB Brandon Iwuh

Jaguars cut DT Montavious Stanley

Jaguars acquire MLB Kirk Morrison and a 5th-round pick from Raiders for 4th-round pick

Jaguars trade DE Quentin Groves to Raiders for a 5th-round pick

Jaguars sign DE Aaron Kampman

Jaguars sign WR Kassim Osgood

Jaguars re-sign G Kynan Forney

Jaguars re-sign DT Atiyyah Ellison

Jaguars tender OLB Clint Ingram

Jaguars sign TE Ernest Wilford

Jaguars re-sign WR Troy Williamson

Jaguars cut WR Torry Holt

Jaguars cut DT Rob Meier 

 

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