I was recently asked to participate to a Cooperative Mock draft on Next Season Sports. I'll be honest, the scenario that played out probably won't happen but hey, something to consider as football is now officially over.
David Garrard was the most hit quarterback in the league in 2008, and somebody needs to protect Jacksonville’s $60 million man. Monroe managed to keep one of last year’s first round picks, Brandon Albert from playing Left Tackle at Virginia, which says something about his ability. Last year’s starting left tackle, Khalif Barnes was shown the door this year, and the rash of injuries along the entire line made the Jaguars go from having perhaps the most dominant running game in the NFL to leaning on Garrard all season. This makes Monroe’s selection even more vital as the Jaguars need a guy who will protect Garrard as well as a solid run blocker.
Monroe is nimble for a guy his size, and is the best tackle in the draft at using leverage to his advantage. He has some issues with work ethic, but I think one training camp with Jack Del Rio will clear that up quickly.
The Jaguars could go several ways with this pick. Jeremy Maclin of Missouri, Jason Smith of Baylor, BJ Raji of Boston College, or trading out to a team that wants Mark Sanchez’s services are also viable options here. However, when a franchise quarterback, left tackle, or running back is on the board, you don’t leave them there for your opposition to take them. I believe Eugene Monroe will fill the gap Tony Boselli left at tackle for the Jaguars and help return them to being a Super Bowl contender in 2009.
As you've been noticing lately, scouting reports have begun in mass. I'll have a report up on Monroe within the next week or two. On Wednesday one will be up on another hot tackle for the Jaguars, Michael Oher. Also we'll be launching the Big Cat Country Draft Central soon, so stay tuned for that.