It's Wednesday, and that means it's time for another Jaguars' seven-round mock draft!
Part of my goal in producing so many of these damn things is to give fans a look at as many of the potential outcomes for the Jaguars' roster. It's a bit of folly to provide a mock draft without also considering free agency, as the latter informs the former. Keep in mind, this isn't my "dream scenario," but it is a realistic glimpse at what a successful offseason could look like for the Jaguars.
The salary cap is expected to reduce down to about $175M for the 2021 season, and while that limits the Jags to an extent, it hampers most other teams around the league even more. If the cap is $175M, that will still give the Jaguars about $55 million in cap space entering the new league year.
Major In-House Departures:
RG AJ Cann ($4.96M 2021 cap savings)
TE Tyler Eifert ($5.25 M 2021 cap savings)
New Salary Cap Space: $65.2M
Major In-House Signings:
LT Cam Robinson (2 years, $11M/yr, $7M 2021 cap hit)
DE Dawuane Smoot (3 years, $6.5M/yr, $4M 2021 cap hit)
CB Sidney Jones (3 years, $7M/yr, $5M 2021 cap hit)
Keeping Cam Robinson around as the starting left tackle for a couple more years isn't ideal in my eyes. I'd much rather throw everything I've got at Trent Williams or even Russell Okung. But with the Jaguars expected to retain OL coach George Warhop, and Cam Robinson entering the prime of his career, this might be the path the Jaguars take. I'd have to think if the Jaguars roll with Cam in 2021, they'd nab his eventual replacement in the 2021 NFL Draft. Dawuane Smoot is a versatile rotational player on the defensive line that's produced 11.5 sacks in limited playing time the last two seasons. Sidney Jones is a starting-caliber outside cornerback when healthy.
New Salary Cap Space: $49.2M
Major Free Agent Signings:
TE Jonnu Smith (3 years, $10M/yr, $6.5M 2021 cap hit)
S Marcus Maye (3 years, $10M/yr, $6.5M 2021 cap hit)
WR Will Fuller (3 years, $17M/yr, $11M 2021 cap hit)
RG Brandon Scherff (3 years, $13M/yr, $8M 2021 cap hit)
The Jaguars add four plus starters in free agency. Jonnu Smith immediately becomes the most talented receiving tight end the Jaguars have ever had (woof). Marcus Maye plays at a consistently high level and will cost a bit less than Justin Simmons. Will Fuller will probably be the third or fourth highest-paid receiver on the market this year, but he's the most explosive and was dominant on the field in 2020. Pairing Fuller and DJ Chark as outside receivers makes the Jaguars' vertical passing game lethal. Brandon Scherff is one of the top ten guards in football, and his addition gives the Jaguars one of the best interior trios on the offensive line in the league.
New Salary Cap Space: $17.2M
#1. QB Trevor Lawrence, Clemson
The Jags land their generational talent at QB. Enough said.
#25. DT Christian Barmore, Alabama
By adding the explosive interior penetrator, the Jaguars hope they're getting their version of Chris Jones.
#27. WR Kadarius Toney, Florida
(Trade: Jaguars send #33, #65, #129 to Ravens for #27, #59)
Again copying the Chiefs' blueprint to an extent, the Jaguars add even more explosive ability to their offense. With the Chark, Fuller duo on the outside and Laviska Shenault and Kadarius Toney running the middle of the field, the Jaguars have a diverse and dangerous group of playmakers at receiver.
#46. S Trevon Moehrig, TCU
Pairing Moerhig with Maye gives the Jaguars two do-it-all safeties that have playmaking DNA and consistency from down to down. Moehrig is the best safety in this class.
#59. OT James Hudson, Cincinnati
Hudson is unrefined yet effective. A former defensive lineman, Hudson didn't start at left tackle until 2020. Despite his noticeable learning curve, he dominated the competition and even played well against the Georgia edge rushers in the Peach Bowl. Hudson didn't allow a sack all year and offers the upside of a first-round talent. If Urban Meyer wants to run a heavy zone scheme, Hudson is a perfect match, as his movement skills may be unparalleled in this class.
#81. CB Ifeatu Melifonwu, Syracuse
(Trade: Jaguars send #105, #169 to Dolphins for #81)
Landing a player with Melifonwu's athleticism and physicality at this point in the draft is rare. He'll need to be coached up, and the Jaguars will need to figure out where and how he fits. Like Hudson, Melifonwu has the potential to a Pro Bowl type player if the Jaguars' coaching staff can get the most out of him.
#121. DE Ronnie Perkins, Oklahoma
(Trade: Jaguars send #144, 2022 5th-Round pick to Raiders for #121)
Perkins dominated on the field in 2020 but will need to develop counters and play stronger to be effective at the NFL level. He's another player that has the upside of a day one pick.
#202. RB Khalil Herbert, Virginia Tech
(Trade: Jaguars send #225, #246 to Chargers for #202)
There's really no reason a back as talented as Herbert should still be on the board. A perfect fit for a zone rushing attack, Herbert has excellent vision and contact balance. Similar to James Robinson, he should be able to play on all three downs. Herbert is the type of runner that should be able to carry the load on the ground in the event of a James Robinson injury.
This isn't the perfect offseason for the Jaguars, but it's pretty darn good. Every single draft pick has starter potential, and several of them should be mismatches from the get go. Fixing the interior of the defensive line, assembling a strong safety group, an improved corner group, one of the best interior offensive lines in football, and an explosive bunch of receiving threats while also adding talent and depth at offensive tackle and running back is a massive win for the Jaguars.
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