On Now
Coming Up
  • Thu., Apr. 17, 2014 11:00AM - 12:00PM EDT Live O-Zone Live Join jaguars.com senior writer John Oehser as he tackles the fans' tough questions about all things Jaguars and NFL.
  • Sat., Apr. 19, 2014 10:00AM - 2:00PM EDT Live Jaguars at Nocatee Farmer's Market Join Tony Boselli, Dwayne Gratz, Zane Beadles, ROAR cheerleaders, Jaxson de Ville and the D-Line as they help build momentum for the 2014 season.
  • Thu., May. 08, 2014 12:00PM EDT NFL DRAFT- Day 1 More Details Coming Soon!
  • Thu., May. 08, 2014 6:00PM - 10:00PM EDT Live Bud Light Draft Day Party presented by PRI **MUST REGISTER FOR FREE TICKETS HERE: http://bit.ly/DraftParty14**

    REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED TO ATTEND!

    BY REGISTERING, YOU WILL BE AUTOMATICALLY ENTERED INTO A DRAWING FOR A CHANCE TO WIN A SUITE TO THE JAGUARS 2014 HOME OPENER!

    Party will include:
    • Player, Alumni & The ROAR of the Jaguars autographs
    • Performances by the ROAR and Jacksonville Jaguars D-Line
    • Appearance by Jaxson De Ville & the Jax Pack
    • Raffle prizes & stage contests
    • Interactive games including rock wall, trampoline jump, paintball demo
    • Jaguars logo merchandise on sale
    • Limited time ticket offer including The Pittsburgh Steelers and New York Giants games 
    • Local food trucks and more!
  • Fri., May. 09, 2014 12:00PM EDT NFL DRAFT- Day 2 More Details Coming Soon!
  • Sat., May. 10, 2014 12:00PM EDT NFL DRAFT- Day 3 More Details Coming Soon!
  • Sat., May. 10, 2014 12:00PM EDT Jaguars LIVE @ Westfield More Details Coming Soon!
  • Sat., May. 10, 2014 12:30PM EDT Junior ROAR Academy Bring your kids to the Junior ROAR Academy this year
  • Sun., May. 11, 2014 1:00PM EDT Jaguars Coaching Clinic (London) Take part in the Jaguars Coaching Clinic in London this year
  • Thu., Sep. 04, 2014 12:00PM EDT NFL Season Kick Off

    More Details Coming Soon!

News

Print
RSS

So far . . . really, really good

Posted Apr 26, 2013

EDITORIAL: Caldwell, Bradley pleased with first two days, three rounds of Jacksonville Jaguars’ 2013 NFL Draft

JACKSONVILLE – So far, so good.

And in the case of David Caldwell’s first draft as the Jaguars’ General Manager, it’s no stretch to say that with two days and three rounds complete, he sees things as having gone really well.

The Jaguars entered the three-day 2013 NFL Draft with seven selections and many needs. They entered it looking to fill the biggest needs with the best possible value.

“Value and need – and that’s perfect,” Caldwell said shortly after the Jaguars’ final selection of Day 2 of the 2013 NFL Draft Friday evening.

“Somebody in the draft room told me, ‘Hey these are the three guys we were targeting about a month ago.’’’

So far, so good. Really, really good.

The Jaguars closed Friday by selecting University of Connecticut cornerback Dwayne Gratz with the second selection of the third round, the 64th selection overall.

The team already had selected Texas A&M offensive tackle Luke Joeckel with the second overall selection of the first round Thursday, and then selected safety Johnathan Cyprien of Florida International with the first selection of the second round.

The selections of Cyprien and Gratz did more than just allow the Jaguars to address to major needs in the secondary. Bradley said it also meant that one of the specific scenarios the Jaguars had outlined as possible on Day 2 had played out as planned.

“It was a nip and tuck at the end there,” Jaguars Head Coach Gus Bradley said, describing the wait for the second selection of Round 3. “We were all standing in the war room watching until the last couple of picks, and we were fortunate that he was there.

“One of the scenarios in the second and third round was Cyprien and Gratz. It’s amazing. I think we had three different scenarios. Once we looked at taking a corner in the second round and a safety in the third. We said, ‘What happens if these things fell into place in case Cyprien wasn’t there? Now what is our plan?’

“It was just unique that it happened that way.”

As Caldwell and Bradley saw it, Gratz being available in Round 3 meant they had chosen three reliable, highly-graded players who have a very good chance to start next season.

That’s absolutely true of Joeckel, considered by many the best player available regardless of position in the draft. And it’s true of Cyprien, who many observers projected in the first round.

Caldwell said it’s equally true of Gratz, rated as the No. 7 available corner by NFL Draft Scout.

“He has to compete to do it,” Caldwell said. “He has the skillset to do it and we hope that he comes in and does it. Obviously that’s going to go around through the OTAs, mini-camp and through training camp.

“The best guy’s going to start, so it doesn’t matter if you’re a third round, first round, second round, or college free agent. I think the best guy’s going to start.”

There had been talk of the Jaguars trading out of the second-round selection Friday for more picks late in the draft, and Caldwell had thought before the draft the selection would have value because of the availability of several quarterbacks at the spot.

Caldwell, however, said on Friday that the team received just three calls regarding the selection. He and Bradley each said that the team targeted Cyprien shortly after the first round ended on Thursday night.

“We went through this whole thing,” Bradley said Friday shortly after the Cyprien selection. “Dave and I and Andy (Dengler) and Terry (McDonough), we said, ‘What happens if these three guys are there in the top of the second or these two guys?’ Cyprien was one of those guys that we had hoped would be there.

“We were hoping he would get to us. He’s been targeted for a while now. We really like him.”

Bradley said Cyprien was one of the players the Jaguars studied intently the weekend before the draft.

“We fell in love with him even more,” Bradley said.

Bradley also said the team’s conviction about Cyprien further limited the chance of a trade at No. 2.

“In our conversation we said it’s got to be pretty good,” he said. “You want guys that can come in here and play a long time and can add to it. It’s hard to pass guys like that up to move down a couple of spots. Not that we weren’t intrigued by that but when you have somebody that you really covet and he’s there, that’s great.”

Bradley said late Friday night one of the most striking aspects of the first two rounds was that by the end of Round 2, the Jaguars’ board was almost clean. All but one of the players Caldwell and the scouting staff projected in the first two rounds was off the board when the team selected Gratz.

“(Owner Shad (Khan) commented on them,” Bradley said. “He said, ‘Look at that Gus.’ I said that’s amazing how it went just to follow our board to a T.’’

As much as possible given the uncertain nature of the draft, Caldwell and Bradley said the same was true with the Jaguars’ selections. They wanted to improve the offensive line in Round 1 and did so. And while the idea of a trade was tempting on Day 2, they wanted to improve a depleted secondary. They did that with a pair of players who could start much sooner rather than later.

The draft is far from over. Around the Jaguars this offseason, Rounds 4-7 matter a lot, and college free agency after the draft matters just as much. Caldwell on Friday said that players who join the team Saturday not only will make the team, they will compete for starting roles.

So, yes, work remains this weekend, but make no mistake: with Days 1 and 2 of their first draft now history, Caldwell and Bradley like what has been done thus far.

So far, so good.

Comments

 
blog comments powered by Disqus

Recent Articles