Gene Smith, in his first draft as Jaguars GM pulled off some surprises. Overall I liked the Jags draft a lot, it addressed some weaknesses and even if Smith took some chances I like that he adhered to his unexpected game plan.
Tackle Eugene Monroe out of Virginia wasn't supposed to be available at the 8th pick. Monroe was described as Smith as the best athlete on the board when the Jags picked; this is serendipitous because the O-line was in my opinion the Jags most glaring need.
Derek Cox, the cornerback out of William & Mary (of all places) was a second round pick that came out of left field. It was especially a head scratcher because Cox wasn't on anyone's radar, he played at a Mickey Mouse college and the Jags traded away a second round pick to get him. Its a bold move, obviously the Jags saw something in this guy and I do admire their conviction in going after him. Very curious if he lives up the the promise Smith made for him.
Instead of Michael Crabtree in the first round, the Jags selected the diminutive speedster Mike Thomas out of Arizona. Given the difficulty in handicapping WRs this seems like a workable tradeoff when you consider the previous picks.
The Jags may get criticized but at least there was evidence of some life and some creativity in the game plan.
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Written by Mark Reichman