The college football season is beginning to make it's home stretch run and it's time to once again look at players who may find themselves in Black and Teal this upcoming season. In an attempt to keep this is true to form as possible, main stays Ndumakong Suh and Eric Berry sadly make their departure as the Jaguars are not nearly bad enough to even sniff them in next April's draft.
The more I've been thinking about it, the more I think a quarterback make's sense in the first round of the draft. To that end, the current Top 10 to watch is as follows
1. Christian Ponder, QB, Florida State, Jr
Anyone who can stomach to watch a full game of FSU football this season will come away utterly impressed with Ponder. The Junior QB has made a light year's worth of advances since his troubled sophomore campaign. Behind a now solid offensive line, Ponder has light up the NCAA, ranking in the Top 5 of virtually every relevant stat against BCS competition. If Ponder declares, expect him to have a Mark Sanchez like rise.
2. Jake Locker, QB, Washington, Jr
I went back and forth between putting either Locker or Tony Pike of Cincinnati at the #2 spot. In the end, Pike is injured and Locker has more upside, so I went with Locker. Locker may be something of a project for a first round pick, but I like the grit I see from him. Also, the last time the Jaguars had a scrambling QB from Washington, it worked out well.
3. Morgan Burnett, SS, Georgia Tech, Jr
Burnett may be the 2nd best safety in the draft with Taylor Mays' inconsistency. A big, strong, hard hitting SS, Burnett would be the 2nd coming of Donovan Darius for the Jaguars. If a QB isn't available, he may be the BAP in the 15-20 range.
4. Rolando McClain, MLB, Alabama, Jr
If the Jags are going to keep running the 3-4, they'll need to upgrade their personnel this offseason. McClain is a beast of a linebacker and may be the best natural 3-4 linebacker in the draft. Another tough decision here between McClain and Brandon Spikes, but I felt McClain works better in a 3-4.
5. George Selvie, DE, South Florida, Sr
Was it really just two years ago Selvie was the most feared pass rusher in college football? Injuries and lack of production have forced him off the map and out of the first round. Selvie projects as a 3-4 OLB in the NFL and unless he has an excellent offseason, may slide into the third round.
6.Matt Tennant, C, Boston College, Sr
A quality guy with a high motor, Tennant would fit the Gene Smith profile. Brad Meester isn't getting any younger, and some fresh blood in the interior is needed. Tennant is a 4th or 5th round prospect.
7.Vince Oghobaase, DT, Duke, Sr
Oghobasse is one of the best DT in the country not named Suh or McCoy. He projects as either a 3-4 DE or a 4-3 defensive tackle. Henderson was linked to several trade rumors in the last offseason and his stock has risen since with his terrific play this season.Ogho would be an excellent replacement paired with Terrance Knighton.
8. Josh Pinkard, SS, Southern Cal,Sr
Pinkard can play both corner and safety, making him a versatile player for the Jaguars secondary. He has some medicial and injury issues that may cause him to drop and make him a value pick.
9. Mitch Petrus, G, Arkansas, Sr
Petrus is a solid guard who plays with a mean streak against the run. However, he is somewhat undersized and that could cause him to drop.
10. Dennis Pitta, TE, BYU, Sr
Pitta served on his two year mission, making him older and more mature than most rookies. He's one of the best receiving tight ends in college and would add another weapon on the team.