This is the first in a series of articles breaking down the Jacksonville Jaguars top needs entering the 2013 offseason.
The Jaguars picked the wrong year to finish at the bottom of the league and earn a high draft pick.
Like most teams picking at the top of the draft, the Jaguars have a massive need at the quarterback position; however, there is not any quarterback talent in the draft worth selecting with the second overall pick. There is a completely new regime in Jacksonville which likely means a new quarterback, but where is new Jaguars general manager Dave Caldwell going to find a new signal caller?
Caldwell has already said that he wants to bring in as many as two new quarterbacks this offseason to compete in training camp with Blaine Gabbert and Chad Henne for the starting job in 2013.
With the free agent market at quarterback lacking in talent this offseason, the Jaguars may have to turn to the trade market to find a quarterback that can come in and immediately competing for the starting job. The two biggest names being floated in trade rumors this offseason are Alex Smith of the San Francisco 49ers and Matt Flynn of the Seattle Seahawks. Both would probably win the starting job for the Jaguars next year, but neither would provide them with a long-term answer at the quarterback position.
Perhaps the best opportunity for the Jaguars to land a franchise quarterback this offseason will come on the second day of the NFL Draft. While the talent at the top of the draft may be lacking, there are several quarterbacks available that would be a solid second or third round pick for the Jaguars.
The Jaguars scouting staff has already talked to five quarterback prospects at the Senior Bowl that figure to be in the mix during the first three rounds of the draft. Of the quarterbacks being talked about that could go off the board on the second day of the draft the guys I find most intriguing as potential franchise quarterbacks are Tyler Wilson of Arkansas and Zac Dysert of Miami(Ohio).
Among the other quarterbacks that should be available in the mid-rounds include Ryan Nassib of Syracuse, E.J. Manuel of Florida State, Mike Glennon of North Carolina State and Landry Jones of Oklahoma.
I think the Jaguars will leave this year’s NFL Draft with a quarterback that can immediately press Gabbert and Henne for the starting job. Who that quarterback is remains to be seen, but I am confident that the new Jaguars coaching staff and general manager will identify a guy that they believe can develop into a franchise quarterback and bring him into the fold. I do not think the Jaguars are going to waste resources this offseason on trying to acquire a quarterback through trade who would only be a bridge to a younger guy with more promise.
The Jaguars have too many needs to give away draft picks for a short-term solution at quarterback. If Gabbert or Henne is good enough to beat out whichever rookie the Jaguars select, they will suffice as a bridge to the younger guy for 2013 season.
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