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Things can change in professional football seemingly overnight. Position groups of strength can be quickly weakened through aging, injury and departure, and that’s why a proactive approach to team building generally nets the most success. With this in mind, Pro Football Focus paired each of the 32 NFL franchises with a prospect that may not be a fit at the moment but will play at a position of need in a couple of years.
For the Jaguars, that player is Oklahoma State offensive tackle Teven Jenkins.
Offensive tackle went from a pressing need for Jacksonville to merely an area they could address early with the decision to franchise tag left tackle Cam Robinson. That doesn’t mean they shouldn’t look to improve the position should the value be there with one of their three selections between Pick 25 and Pick 45.
Jenkins is a first-round talent on PFF’s Big Board — the 29th ranked player overall. If you want someone to set the tone up front, he’s your guy. Jenkins threw defenders around last season at Oklahoma State en route to a 92.0 overall grade.
In Jacksonville, he could challenge Jawaan Taylor (56.5 PFF grade in 2020) for the starting right tackle job while providing a reason for the Jaguars not to overpay Robinson next offseason coming off the franchise tag. There’s also the possibility that Jenkins could kick inside to guard alongside Robinson and Taylor as a rookie. It’s a position he played early in his career with Oklahoma State.
There’s certainly truth to the idea that offensive line is far from a secure position group in the long term. Players like center Brandon Linder and tackle Jawaan Taylor likely fit into the team’s future plans, but Andrew Norwell (who is expensive and hasn’t quite lived up to his contract) and Robinson (who was franchise tagged but may not be on the roster in 2022) may not.
With this in mind, using one of the team’s early-round picks on Jenkins may not be a bad move. It seems unlikely that Jacksonville will take him at No. 25 (if available), though he could play at right guard as a rookie if they did. But if he fell to the second round, where the team picks both at No. 33 and No. 45, it could potentially be an option.
Though taking a future starter at offensive tackle could be beneficial, it seems likely that the Jaguars will prioritize positions of more pressing need with their first few selections.