Jacksonville Jaguars: Gene Smith's Draft Haul in 2009 looking all the more impressive

JACKSONVILLE FL - SEPTEMBER 12: Robert Ayers #56 of the Denver Broncos attempts to tackle Mike Thomas #80 of the Jacksonville Jaguars during the NFL season opener game at EverBank Field on September 12 2010 in Jacksonville Florida. (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)

Even with the concern over Derek Cox, the first game in 2010 further cemented the fact that Gene Smith brought in one of, if not the, top draft classes in 2009. Eugene Monroe and Terrance Knighton are budding Pro Bowl players, Eben Britton looks much improved, and Mike Thomas is looking like a steal in the 4th round. However, other developements outside the team are making this haul that much more impressive.

Rick Gosselin of the Dallas Morning News gave us this factoid of interest.

The NFL has played only 17 games since conducting the 2009 draft and already a third of that class has been waived, traded or retired. Of the 257 selections in 2009, 85 are already off the rosters of the drafting teams – a stunning 33.1 percent.

In addition, 10 of the first 100 picks have already either been traded or released. Think about that for a moment. The first three rounds of the draft are considered the money rounds, where teams usually give a player at least three years of leeway. Granted, I predicted Pat White's fate back in April 2009, but the others are quite surprising.

This also doesn't factor in the number of players who are already being declared busts (Andre Smith, Everette Brown, Darrius Heyward-Bey, etc.)

For every move Gene Smith has made to make us chant "In Gene We Trust!!", he's done another to make us go "In Gene We Trust?" However, now that enough time is beginning to pass to make judgments on his moves, it certainly seems the Jaguars are looking the better for it.

If the worst that comes of the 2009 draft is that Derek Cox becomes Reggie Nelson 2.0 and Jarrett Dillard becomes injury plagued, than the Jaguars will have fared far better than just about every other team in the NFL.

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