Over the course of May, both Kyle Crabbs and I will be assessing each team’s specific Draft class. The objective here is to identify value: where it was best and where it was worst. NDT Premium members will soon be able to access the comprehensive breakdowns of draft classes as well, which looks at the pick by pick breakdown of value across our respective 2017 NFL Draft boards. Today I look at the Jacksonville Jaguars.
The full list of their 2017 NFL Draft class is below:
|4||RB||Leonard Fournette||Louisiana State|
|240||FB||Marquez Williams||Miami FL|
Best Value: LB Blair Brown, Ohio
Blair Brown has the mentality and play demeanor that I’m looking for in a second-level player. Everything he does is physical and aggressive as he works to the football.
Brown has good movements skills in any direction, which allows him to make an impact all over the football field. His reactionary skills are excellent and he gets a quick read on plays and commits. Brown is an excellent finisher who rarely misses on an opportunity to bring down the ball carrier.
Brown projects as an eventual starter as an inside linebacker and was great value at 148 overall considering he was my 73rd ranked player in the class.
Worst Value: EDGE Dawuane Smoot, Illinois
Dawuane Smoot offers considerable upside as a pass rusher with first step quickness, a pass rush plan, and plus technique, but he must develop further as a run defender to be relied upon as an every-down player in the NFL.
When playing the run, Smoot fails to maintain his gap integrity and often finds himself too far up field, creating running lanes for the offense. Smoot didn’t improve from his junior to senior seasons as I would have hoped–virtually the same set of notes come when evaluating either year’s film.
Smoot has room to grow and he could easily outperform his valuation, but he needs to take another step. Smoot was my 101st overall player on the board so 68 overall is a bit high for me.
Could Surprise: CB Jalen Myrick, Minnesota
Jalen Myrick is an athletic cornerback with good man coverage skills. Although you wish he was taller and longer, Myrick has the ability to line up man to man and win with good technique early in routes, foot speed to match short routes, and long speed to remain in phase vertically. He is an adequate tackler and has explosive movement skills in any direction.
Myrick is lacking in terms of his ability to play the football and disrupt at the catch point, as he is more focused on staying connected to his man and is late to find the football. His zone skills are adequate, but he wins more with his athletic ability than with awareness and anticipation.
Myrick has additional value because of his experience returning kicks. Myrick profiles as a reserve at slot or on the outside with the upside to start if his mental processing and ball skills improve.