Hays Carlyon's Jaguars Blog

Projecting Jaguars 53-Man Roster: What it Tells Us About the Draft.

todayApril 20, 2022

Background

By: Hays Carlyon

 

The Jaguars aggressively attacked free agency in March.

Now, comes the most important part of the offseason – the NFL Draft.

The Jaguars have 12 picks in the draft, which starts April 28.

Could a dozen players really make the 53-man roster? The best way to answer that is to project it.

Let’s get a good look at exactly what the roster needs.

Here is our 53-man Jaguars roster projection heading into the draft.

 

OFFENSE (25)

Quarterback (2)

Who: Trevor Lawrence and C.J. Beathard.

Draft need: The Jaguars don’t need to draft a quarterback. Period. It’s a terrible class, so why invest a late-round pick?

 

Running back (4)

Who: Travis Etienne, James Robinson, Ryquell Armstead and Nathan Cottrell

Draft need: Etienne (Lisfranc) and Robinson (Achilles) are coming off major injuries. Armstead and Cottrell aren’t suited for bigger roles. Investing a fourth-or-fifth round pick would make sense with the hope the rookie can be the third back.

 

Receiver (6)

Who: Christian Kirk, Zay Jones, Marvin Jones, Laviska Shenault, Laquon Treadwell and Jamal Agnew.

Draft need: The Jaguars added Kirk and Zay Jones in free agency, but need to invest a premium pick here. Opening the second-round (or trading back into the first) makes sense to secure one of the top receivers in a good class. Georgia’s George Pickens would be ideal at No. 33, as he will be a better version of the departed DJ Chark.

 

Tight end (4)

Who: Evan Engram, Dan Arnold, Chris Manhertz and Luke Farrell.

Draft need: Adding Engram deemphasized the need, but the need still exists. Taking a tight end with one of the two third-round picks could be an option if the right players falls. The Jaguars definitely need to draft one by the fifth round.

 

Offensive line (9)

Who: Cam Robinson (left tackle), Ben Bartch (left guard), Tyler Shatley (center), Brandon Scherff (right guard), Jawaan Taylor (right tackle), Walker Little, Will Richardson, Badara Traore and KC McDermott.

Draft need: I’m assuming the top pick will be used on outside linebacker in either Michigan’s Aidan Hutchinson or Georgia’s Travon Walker. Addressing pass rush is the sensible move with three tackles (Robinson, Little and Taylor) all under contract. The interior line should be addressed by the third round, with pick either 65 or 70 making the most sense unless the value really lines up at 33. A second lineman should be added with one of the four sixth-round picks.

 

DEFENSE (25)

Defensive line (6)

Who: Foley Fatakasi, Malcom Brown, Roy Robertson-Harris, Dawuane Smoot, DaVon Hamilton and Jay Tufele.

Draft need: This isn’t a huge need. The Jaguars can wait, but it wouldn’t be a bad idea to take a couple defensive linemen in the sixth and seventh round to try and find a hidden gem.

 

Outside linebacker (4)

Who: Josh Allen, Arden Key, K’Lavon Chaisson and Jordan Smith.

Draft need: Enormous. The Jaguars have little beyond Allen, who has been good but not great. Hutchinson should be added to give the defense the pass-rush boost on the edge it needs.

 

Inside linebacker (3)

Who: Foye Oluokun, Shaq Quarterman and Chapelle Russell.

Draft need: Big, but the Jaguars can wait until the third round and still get an instant starter.

 

Cornerbacks (7)

Who: Shaq Griffin, Tyson Campbell, Darious Williams, Tre Herndon, Xavier Crawford, Chris Claybrooks and Brandon Rusnak.

Draft need: Low. Taking a corner in the sixth or seventh round would be smart.

 

Safeties (5)

Who: Rayshawn Jenkins, Andre Cisco, Andrew Wingard, Rudy Ford and Daniel Thomas.

Draft need: The Jaguars should draft a safety, but can wait until the sixth round before they start considering one.

 

SPECIALISTS (3)

Who: Matthew Wright (kicker), Logan Cooke (punter) and Ross Matiscik (long snapper).

Draft need: I would draft a kicker in the sixth or seventh round.

 

CONCLUSIONS

I don’t know that 12 draft picks can make the 53-man roster, but 10 absolutely can. Projecting the 53 was really challenging in the last 10 spots. The roster certainly needs another major infusion of talent.

The Jaguars probably should look to pair down to 10 selections, either by trading up from 33 or moving a couple picks on the final day for 2023 selections.

 

(You can email Hays at haysc@1010xl.com and follow him on Twitter @HaysCarlyon).

 

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