The Jacksonville Jaguars have made some huge moves in free agency, and it could mean a new name at No. 1 in the 2022 NFL Draft.
The Jacksonville Jaguars took the first day of the legal tampering period in free agency and spent in a big, big way. They landed the first big fish of the offseason, getting former Commanders guard Brandon Scherff to boost an offensive line that needs to protect Trevor Lawrence.
Then, Jacksonville got right to the skill positions, signing Christian Kirk to a big time deal that could be worth up to $84 million over four seasons. They weren’t finished there, as they brought in Evan Engram as a pass catching tight end and Zay Jones as well. It’s an important overhaul for a unit that was downright awful after D.J. Chark went down.
The Scherff signing, combined with giving Cam Robinson the franchise tag again and some flashes from Walker Little, could signal that the Jacksonville Jaguars are going in a different direction at number one in the 2022 NFL Draft.
Kayvon Thibodeaux was the favorite in the fall, but with the offensive line struggles, the consensus flipped to that side of the ball, with Evan Neal, Ikem Ekwonu, and even Charles Cross all getting consideration in mock drafts.
Now, with an offensive line focus in free agency, mocks (and word around the NFL) will shift back again, this time to Michigan’s Aidan Hutchinson. Hutchinson had a wildly productive 2021 season for the Wolverines, and had some of his biggest games when he needed to against top competition in Penn State and Ohio State. The technique and pass rush plan are evident, and he’ll bring an impact on all three downs.
The Jacksonville Jaguars have often addressed the defensive line early in the NFL Draft (Josh Allen, Chaisson, Taven Bryan), and 2022 will likely be no different. It isn’t a guarantee, but the approach in free agency is definitely telling.