With fifty votes total, our community prefers a DE-OLB with three-quarters majority. Given this, we shall delve further in! To ease our discussion, we shall consider all picked at no2 since 1970 (generally considered the beginning of the Modern Era. Before this, in the Official online resource, there does not seem to have been any specifically DE/OLB chosen at no2, at least in our current NFL ideals. Therefore, let us sail into yesterday's wind.
Since the Birth of our Franchise in 1993, only five DE-OLB have been chosen. So far the youngest (Von Miller, Denver, 2011) is excellent, historically so and definitely was worth the no2. Chris Long, our Eugene Monroe's year-mate is definitely a good player. Is he as good as his father was? In five seasons, he has already managed 42 sacks, an average of over 8 a year. That is better really than anyone on the Jaguars, so yeah he is worth the no2. Julius Peppers, in roughly a calendar decade notched one hundred eleven sacks. He has been all-pro in some manner six seasons, rookie of the year for his draft season and an all-2000s Team member. Most definitely a no2, and on his way to being probably a 1st ballot HoFer at retirement (given DE stamina, I would ball park him as class of 2024). 2000 draft's Arrington though probably was not worth his pick position (as no2 over other contenders, mostly durable journeyman or somewhat standouts like Abraham). He only had 23 1/2 sacks over his career, less than a sixth of John Abraham and about a third of Shaun Ellis and half of Julian Peterson and Brian Urlacher. So no, probably due to injury Arrington was not worth the no2. Our last no2, Kevin Hardy proved to be better than Arrington and went all-pro in 1999 (which I totally did not know!!!).
(To be continued, pre-1990 is next! Obviously, Info is heavily borrowed from the source (NFL.com) and verified using stat websites)
Let's continue! There seems to be a heavy amount of about decade long contributors tricking out of this no2 spot at DE and LB. In the 1980's, three LBers and one DE came out of this place in the draft. 1988 saw Neil Smith, who after research,, seems to have been an excellent player. Smith is one of roughly thirty 100 sack players, and more than a third of those are hall-of-famers. He was a four time All-Pro, and ran a 4.55 40-yd at six four and 260 pounds. That is comparable to (personal-mocked) numbers of several LB in the draft.
The year previous (1987) saw Cornelius Bennett, who statistically was comparable or slightly worse than Smith. I really couldn't find much about the 1982 no2 (Johnnie Cooks) or the 1978 no2 (Art Still). We definitely know the 1981 no2 was good, being Lawrence Taylor sort of confirms that.
The 1970s were a bit better actually, logging 51 seasons elapsed between four players (one of whom was the HOFer Cowboy Randy White). Mike Bell of 1979 seems to have been a statistical journeyman, but did stay a dozen seasons with the Chiefs and made over 50 sacks. The earliest post-merger, DE/LB no2 (Sherman White, 1972) actually played before-recorded Sacks for roughly a decade. I had to use PFR to really get a description. The only players I really remember (or know of somewhat) that are described as having a similar career as White are Phillip Daniels (4th Rd, 1996) and Shaun Ellis (1st, 2000).
So after all that, and given who is available it is likely the Jaguars should pick either a LBer or DE from the no2 position come April. History actually suggests it!
Let's hope though we can pull a Julius Peppers, Neil Smith or Randy White. What are your thoughts?, Let em fly!