The Jaguars moved quickly to trade up in the third round and grab Clint Ingram, who represented the end of the line for linebackers in this year's draft.
"This is the last guy we felt has the ability to come in and compete for a starting job," Jaguars personnel director James Harris said of Ingram, 6-1, 240, of Oklahoma.
Ingram is one of six players the Jaguars targeted on the first day of the draft. Harris said the three players the Jaguars drafted – Marcedes Lewis, Maurice Drew and Ingram – represented three of the six targets.
"We wanted to come out with a linebacker and we did," Harris said.
The Jaguars traded their third (92nd) and fourth-round (125th) picks to the Cowboys for their third-round pick (80). It leaves the Jaguars with only two picks (fifth and sixth rounds) on Sunday and, unless the Jaguars do further trading, this will be only a five-man draft class, which would be the smallest in Jaguars history.
That fact did not disturb Harris. "We can be aggressive in (undrafted) free agency. We'll just treat those guys as draft picks," he said.
Ingram gives the Jaguars legitimate hope for having solved their need at linebacker. The team lost last year's starter at weakside linebacker, Akin Ayodele, in free agency. Ingram says he can play either weakside or strongside linebacker. Daryl Smith is the Jaguars' starting strongside linebacker.
"Jacksonville was a place I felt I'd fit in very easily," said Ingram, who visited Jacksonville and had pre-draft conversations with linebackers coach Mark Duffner. "That's one of the things we talked about," Ingram added, referring to the vacant starting job.
Ingram intercepted five passes last season and two of those interceptions were game-winners. He also had 12 tackles for loss and five sacks last season.