Team Needs: Jacksonville Jaguars
NEEDS RATING KEY
5.0 - High priority. This is a position that is a glaring weakness and there is the likelihood that this team cannot compete next year without making a major addition here.
4.0 - Medium Priority. This is an area that is an obvious weakness, but the team isn't quite desperate to make a major move here possibly because they have some young potential. But this is an area that if the team cannot fix via free agency, will definitely use one of their picks in the first three or four rounds to supplement.
3.0 - Upgrade Potential. This is a position that isn't a weakness per se, but there is significant room for an upgrade. If the right player comes along they will certainly snag him, but if they don't fix this position with a major free agent addition or early round pick, then it's not the end of the world.
2.0 - Depth Need. An area where there is a need to add depth. Perhaps there is an aging veteran and they might want to start to look at grooming his heir apparent or replacement. Not likely to be a high priority and a position that more than likely will be address in the middle and late rounds rather than with a top pick.
1.0 - Future Need. This is an area that is not a priority, and doesn't initially appear as a need. But there is some room to develop some depth for perhaps two or more years down the line. This is usually an area that a team will look at in the late rounds if at all.
0.0 - Non-need. This is a position that is a strength of their team, they have a solid starter, capable depth, and/or a young player at the position that they like and want to develop. Very little possibility this area is addressed and would be the equivalent of a wasted draft pick.
Top 10 Needs
1. WR - 5.0
2. DE - 4.0
3. CB - 4.0
4. OT - 2.5
5. S - 2.5
6. OG - 2.5
7. RET - 2.5
8. QB - 2.0
9. P - 2.0
10. DT - 1.5
Quarterback - One of the critical missions of new head coach Mike Mularkey will be getting more out of Blaine Gabbert. It's likely that Gabbert will enter 2012 as the team's starting quarterback, but it definitely makes sense for the Jaguars to at least go after a fallback option with a veteran in case he continues to underwhelm. So the Jaguars will likely be looking at adding a competent veteran with starting potential this off-season to be back up or challenge Gabbert. NEED: 2.0
Running Back - Maurice Jones-Drew is coming off his best season, where he led the league in rushing. Their only issues may be with depth given Rashad Jennings is coming off a knee injury (although some reports indicate it wasn't major) and Deji Karim was middling. So they could be in the market for improved depth here. NEED: 1.5
Fullback - Greg Jones is one of the better lead blockers in the league, and he should see his value increase in the new offense rather than what he saw under Dirk Koetter. He's entering the final year of his contract, so it makes sense if they start looking at options down the road. NEED: 1.5
Wide Receiver - This is a major area of concern as the Jaguars lack any really good starting candidates on the outside. Mike Thomas is a good slot receiver, but they have nobody on the outside that can consistently beat coverage and provide plays. This is a position that getting an established veteran to be their No. 1 in free agency should be a high priority, as well as potentially adding more help via the draft. NEED: 5.0
Tight End - Marcedes Lewis production took a hit, but he's a good fit in this offense that likes good blocking tight ends. Zach Miller has been a productive reserve in the past, but he's had to deal with durability concerns, which could prompt the team to target another developmental option later in the draft. NEED: 1.5
Offensive Tackle - Eugene Monroe showed improvement this past year, and is a solid option on the left. But Eben Britton has been unable to stay on the field, and hasn't been particularly effective when he has played. This likely will prompt the team to bring in at least some competition for the right tackle position. NEED: 2.5
Offensive Guard - Will Rackley struggled as a rookie, but they will likely continue to try and develop him. Uche Nwaneri is serviceable at the other spot, but his long-term future might be at center. Meaning it's quite possible that they will add another piece to the mix to provide immediate depth and eventually be a replacement starter here. NEED: 2.5
Center - Brad Meester is capable here, but entering the final year of his contract. Nwaneri has gotten looks here, but it remains to be seen if the new coaching staff will see him as a long-term option. That could mean that they target some depth here. NEED: 1.0
Defensive Tackle - Knighton and Alualu are a solid pair of young starters, but Knighton has dealt with weight issues and Alualu has a bum knee, so it's not as if this position is rock-solid. They will likely to add some depth and insurance behind them to bolster the rotation. NEED: 1.5
Defensive End - Jeremy Mincey and Matt Roth are free agents. Mincey is someone they want back, but he's keen on testing the market. Roth did not provide the boost to the pass rush they had hoped. Aaron Kampman will likely be cut given he's missed 21 games over the past two years due to injuries. So it's possible that the team will be without its three top pass rushers from last year, meaning this position is likely going to be a high priority. NEED: 4.0
Linebacker - Paul Posluszny proved to be a solid addition in the middle, while Clint Session had to be shut down late in the year after dealing with some concussions. But Russell Allen was a capable fill-in, joining Daryl Smith as a really solid quartet of linebackers. If there is any concern, it's that Smith, arguably the best player on their defense is entering the final year of his contract, and they have no obvious insurance policy if he leaves. NEED: 1.5
Cornerback - This position was decimated by injuries last year, and thus will be a high priority to upgrade. Rashean Mathis is a free agent who they want to keep. He'll be 32 next year and is coming off an ACL tear, likely making the market lukewarm for his services elsewhere. Will Middleton and Derek Cox ended the year on IR, and while both are capable nickel corners, they are overmatched as starters. Thus meaning, this team will likely look at finding someone that can succeed Mathis as their No. 1 corner in the near future. NEED: 4.0
Safety - Dawan Landry is a serviceable starter at strong safety but is by no means a ballhawk or big-time playmaker. Dwight Lowery was solid at times as a converted corner, and while he's a free agent, he should be back. But this a team that definitely needs some more depth and insurance at this spot given the inconsistency they've seen over the years. NEED: 2.5
Kicker - Josh Scobee is a free agent, but the soon-to-be 30 year old appears to be one of their bigger priorities to re-sign, so the fear they lose him isn't high at this point. NEED: 1.0
Punter - Nick Harris was a mid-season pickup and while he was better than Matt Turk, he's a free agent and will turn 34 in July. He's a capable punter, but really nothing more than middling at this point in his career, so it makes sense if they use this opportunity to find a younger long-term solution. NEED: 2.0
Return Specialist - After being a strength a year ago with Deji Karim and Mike Thomas handling kickoff and punt duties, respectively, this area was a weakness this past year. That will likely prompt the team to bring in other options via the draft as they supplement their roster at wide receiver and cornerback. NEED: 2.5
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