Jaguars likely to target major conference players in draft, says Dave Caldwell

USA TODAY Sports

Dave Caldwell says the small school drafting philosophy of the Jaguars will be a thing of the past.

In recent years, many of the complaints directed at the drafting style of former-general manager Gene Smith were about his propensity to draft "small school" players. New general manager Dave Caldwell spoke with John Oehser of Jaguars.com in article posted Monday and told him that fans shouldn't expect the same during his tenure with the team.

"I always believe in drafting and acquiring toward what the norms are," he said. "If 93 percent of the players in the NFL are playing at Division I-A programs, that's the norm. I'm not saying I would never draft a small-school player, but they would have to dominate that level. I wouldn't say absolutes, but I'm a believer: big school, big competition."

During Smith's first draft with the Jaguars, he selected Terrance Knighton and Derek Cox in the third round with back-to-back selections from Temple University and College of William & Mary. The moves were the first of several small school draft picks, although it's worth noting that Temple does compete in the FBS and would fall in the Division I-A category.

What's also interesting to note is that one of the top performers in the 2012 season for the Jaguars was Cecil Shorts III, a fourth round selection in the 2011 NFL Draft from University of Mount Union of Division III.

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