Another year, another disappointing season from the Jacksonville Jaguars. For a team that consistently picks top five in the NFL Draft, the Jaguars never seem to improve anything. The Jags finished 2014 with a 3-13 record, missing the playoffs for the seventh year in a row. Some people seem to believe that combination of general manager Dave Caldwell, head coach Gus Bradley, and quarterback Blake Bortles (the 3rd overall pick in the 2013 NFL Draft) is leading the franchise in the right direction; but at 3-13 it is hard to make that argument. In fact, the Jaguars didn’t win a single game on the road this season—the second time that has happened ion franchise history. At least they were only second to last in the AFC South thanks to the Tennessee Titans.
The only glimmer of hope in the Jaguars 2014 season came in Week 13 against the New York Giants. Down 21-0 in the first half, the Jaguars pulled off the biggest comeback in their young franchise’s history, pulling up a 25-24 victory. The Jags had two defensive touchdowns on their way to outscoring the Giants 25-3 in the second half of the game.
The Jaguars are undoubtedly one of the worst teams in the NFL talent-wise, and one of the worst franchises overall. They have a lot of issues that need to be addressed this offseason if they ever want to at least finish a season at .500 anytime in the near future. The Jags have the 3rd overall selection once again in this year’s draft, so with a little luck and a few good picks maybe the Jaguars can do something soon. Here are the Jacksonville Jaguars biggest needs heading into the 2015 NFL Draft:
Running Back: The Jaguars signed ex-Minnesota Vikings backup Toby Gerhart heading into the 2014 season; however, he did not amount to anything. Gerhart was injured half the season, and when he did play he did very little. The Jags moved Denard Robinson to running back this past season, and that certainly shows some promise. In reality, Robinson and Gerhart could prove to be a solid one-two punch coming out of the back field for the Jaguars, but bringing in some young blood to compete for a spot on the roster never hurts. An early selection here on a running back couldn’t hurt.
Secondary Players: There’s a reason the Jags aren’t exactly known for their secondary. The Jaguars are in desperate need of help in their secondary, especially at the free safety position. Strong safety Josh Evans has started 24 games in his two years pro, and he seems to be a solid contributor for the secondary. Unfortunately, he’s the only one really contributing. The Jags really need a young playmaker that can step in and start playing immediately. Look for the Jaguars to address the issue in the draft with an early to mid-round selection.
Pass Rushing: One of the few parts of the team that the Jaguars have actually done a good job of building up over the years is the defensive line. Sen’Derrick Marks and Roy Miller have both turned out to be great additions to the team, and the Jags have penned them both to long term deals. The only foreseeable problem with the Jaguars defensive line is its age. The average age for the defensive line starters is a little over 29 years. This is not a problem for the next few seasons, but the Jags are in a rebuilding stage not a championship window. The Jaguars need to address this issue by drafting a young pass rusher that they can build their defense around moving forward. Look for the Jaguars to address this need as early as the 3rd overall pick.