It appears as though Derrick Harvey, the Jaguars first round pick in 2008, could likely lose his starting spot next week to Jeremy Mincey, a sixth round draft pick of the Patriots in 2006. Making me look a little ridiculous. The year that was supposed to be the breakout year for Harvey has turned into the weakest of his still young career. The pass rushing we thought we'd see from Harvey in 2010 has not showed at all, seemingly coming from every player other than him.
Jaguar fans have taken solace in the fact that he's a run stuffer first and a pass rusher second. According to Football Outsiders, the fans are right. The Jaguars rank 10th in the league in "Adjusted Line Yards" on rushes to the left defensive end (Harvey's primary position) with 3.53. You can compare that to the right defensive end spot that ranks 19th at 4.52. But is his run stuffing ability enough to warrant a roster spot after he signed a 5 year, $23.8 million contract after being drafted?
Gene Smith has had no problems purging the roster of Shack Harris's draft busts. After the 2009 season he released Matt Jones and allowed Reggie Williams's contract to expire. In the 2010 offseason he traded away Quentin Groves and Reggie Nelson. The only first rounders from the Harris era left are Marcedes Lewis and Derrick Harvey. One certainly due for a large contract extension, while the other may soon see the same fate as the rest of the Harris draft picks.
With the elevated play of Mincey and the potential growth of rookies Larry Hart, Austen Lane and Aaron Morgan into starting-caliber defensive ends, Harvey's worth seems to be limited. That is, unless, a breakout season is still in the cards. The excuses are gone, though. There was a list of reasons why 2010 was the perfect season for a breakout performance. There's very few excuses for why it hasn't been one.
It is highly unlikely that Harvey doesn't finish the season with the Jaguars. The question whether or not Harvey plays with the Jaguars next year probably relies on whether or not Gene can find a trade market for his talents this offseason.