Whole Nine Sports

Jacksonville Jaguars Offseason Grade

Jacksonville Jaguars
Justin Rochat
Follow him on Twitter @WNS_Rochat
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Re-Signings

AJ Cann

G AJ Cann – Cann’s steady production netted him a nice contract of just over $15 million over the next 3 years. Getting Cann back into the fold was important as he was important as he was coveted by many teams in free agency.

Grade: A

Impact: 10/10

Cuts

Tashaun Gipson

S Tashaun Gipson – This, along with a bunch of other cuts we’ll get to in a moment, was necessary in order to sign a Super Bowl Winning MVP at Quarterback. Gipson could still play, but sometimes teams need to make sacrifices for cap relief. Jacksonville saved $7.45 million dollars on a safety that was due to count $9.05 million against the cap.

Grade: B

Impact: 8/10

Malik Jackson

DL Malik Jackson – Jacksonville was forced to move on from another impactful player in Jackson. The money saved ($11 million) was worth it in the end.

Grade: B

Impact: 10/10

Blake Bortles

QB Blake Bortles – Bortles was just not a good quarterback. He showed some promise in his rookie year, but with the way the roster and that defense is set up they needed to find their starting QB and move on from Bortles.

Grade A+

Impact: 10/10

Carlos Hyde

RB Carlos Hyde – Hyde was another cap casualty and was well worth the $4.7 million saved by releasing him.  

Grade: A

Impact: 6/10

Jeremy Parnell

OT Jeremy Parnell – The cap savings continue as Jacksonville also released Offensive Lineman Parnell, which was a no brainer since they would be saving another $6 million dollars.

Grade: A

Impact: 7/10

Kai Forbath

K Kai Forbath – Forbath was a late season injury replacement for Josh Lambo (who signed a 4 year extension) Easy decision here.

Grade: A+

Impact: 1/10

Players Lost in Free Agency

TJ Yeldon

RB TJ Yeldon – The Jags clearly weren’t huge fans of Yeldon. They traded for Hyde but even ended up letting him walk. Yeldon never really seemed to be able to put it all together in Jacksonville.

Impact: 4/10

Austin Seferian-Jenkins

TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins – A highly-touted prospect coming out of Washington, ASJ has had a roller-coaster career so far and it continues this offseason.

Impact: 7/10

Donte Moncrief

WR Donte Moncrief – Donte Moncrief quietly had the second-best year of his career last year. I’m curious to see what he could do with a healthy and competent QB.

Impact: 7/10

Blake Bell

TE Blake Bell – The Belldozer was probably never going to develop into a consistent contributor anyway.

Impact: 2/10

Ereck Flowers

OT Ereck Flowers – Good riddance, you’re someone else’s problem now.

Impact: 3/10

Free Agency Signings

Nick Foles

QB Nick Foles – This was a signing that everyone had seen coming. Foles, who revitalized his career with the Eagles winning a Super Bowl MVP, can finally be the answer at quarterback that the Jaguars need. Jacksonville also hired John DeFilippo as offensive coordinator, who was with Foles when the Eagles won the Super Bowl.

Grade: A

Impact: 10/10

Chris Conley

WR Chris Conley – This isn’t a big signing by any means, but Conley could definitely help out on offense and special teams. Solid pick-up.

Grade: C+

Impact: 6/10

Cedric Ogbuehi

T Cedric Ohbuehi – Jaguars bringing in some competition at the tackle spot is a smart move. Ogbuehi will be fighting for the starting spot as he could be a solid protector for Nick Foles.

Grade: B

Impact: B/10

Geoff Swaim

TE Geoff Swaim – Swaim kind of had a couple break out games in Dallas last season and showed he could be of some value in an offense that utilizes multiple TE’s in the passing game.

Grade: B-

Impact: 6/10

Alfred Blue

RB Alfred Blue– Blue is a solid backup running back and with the questions they have with Fournette this was a smart signing.

Grade: B+

Impact 7/10

Jake Ryan

LB Jake Ryan – Coming off a torn ACL, Jacksonville brought in Ryan to primarily be a backup but he could work his way into the rotation.

Grade: B

Impact: 6/10

Benny Cunningham

RB Benny Cunningham – Cunningham likely won’t be more than a kick returner.

Grade: C+

Impact: 5/10

Draft Picks

Josh Allen

Pick 1.7 EDGE Josh Allen, Kentucky – Nobody thought Allen would make it to pick 7 for the Jaguars, but due to the Raiders and Giants surprise selections he was there for the taking. Allen has loads of potential and could be a force on this defensive line in Jacksonville.

Grade: A+

Impact: 10/10

Jawaan Taylor

Pick 2.35 OT Jawaan Taylor, Florida – A player that was ranked by many as a top 15 player somehow fell to the second round. I had Jawaan Taylor pegged to Jacksonville at pick 7 so this is a big steal. Taylor could man either tackle position for years to come.

Grade: A+

Impact: 10/10

Josh Oliver

Pick 3.69 TE Josh Oliver, San Jose State – The Jaguars definitely need some weapons on offense and Oliver could help them out in that area. Although there may have been some better options on the board I won’t knock this selection.

Grade: B-

Impact: 6/10

Quincy Williams

Pick 3.98 S Quincy Williams, Murray State – The brother of former Alabama DL Quinnen William, Quincy isn’t nearly the impact player.He could be a bit of a tweener due to his size, but he could develop into a solid player.

Grade: C

Impact: 5/10

RyQuell Armstead

Pick 5.140 RB RyQuell Armstead, Temple – With questions surrounding Fournette and his place on this team, this was a smart idea to draft a running back. Was it the right player though? Armstead could find some touches and could be productive. He’s also a solid blocker which helps a lot.  

Grade: B-

Impact: 5/10

Gardner Minshew II

Pick 6.178 QB Gardner Minshew II, Washington State – Minshew played for one of my favorite coaches Mike Leach who popularized the “Air Raid” offense. He has the intangibles and accuracy to stick around in this league, but I’m not sure if he’ll be able to make the Jags in year one. Look for him to join the practice squad.

Grade: D+

Impact: 2/10

Dontavius Russell

Pick 7.235 DT Dontavius Russell, Auburn – There’s definitely some potential in Russell’s game. He’s a rotational player who needs to be more consistent in his play. Russell has a good chance of making the team out of camp.

Grade: C+

Impact: 5/10

GPA for Draft: 3.46 (B+)

Overall

Dave Caldwell and Tom Coughlin

I see what Tom Coughlin and David Caldwell are trying to do here. They realize the areas the team needed to improve on and the biggest area was obviously at QB. They positioned the team to sign the best one on the market in Nick Foles even though it meant parting ways with some impactful players. They signed some offensive depth at wide receiver and tight end as well as adding some depth on the offensive line. They re-signed a coveted guard in AJ Cann while also finding some depth in the running back room. As far as this draft goes they did get lucky with how the draft played out, but I will give them credit for sticking to their board in the beginning of the draft picking best player available while also addressing needs. Overall this was a solid offseason that should position the Jacksonville Jaguars for a chance to compete for the 2019 playoffs.


Overall Grade: B