The Jacksonville Jaguars have a knack of finding undrafted free agents who don’t just stick around, but play better than their drafted peers. Abry Jones? Allen Hurns? Corey Grant? All have outperformed teammates who were drafted ahead of them.
This year’s undrafted free agent class is being named as one of the best from Bleacher Report, with the Jaguars getting a B+ and only having six teams ranked ahead of them.
Here’s what Bleacher Report had to say about the Jaguars’ class:
The Jacksonville Jaguars have spent a fortune on defense over the past two years, both in terms of free-agent dollars and early draft picks.
Those players will form the core of the Jacksonville D in 2017, but there's still depth to flesh out.
And in that regard, the Jaguars may have gotten a gift this year in the form of Utah defensive end Hunter Dimick.
Despite piling up 13.5 sacks and 19.5 tackles for loss for the Utes in 2016, Dimick wasn't invited to the combine. But after shining at Utah's pro day, Dimick told Amy Donaldson of the Deseret News he was confident he'd allayed concerns about his lack of speed and athleticism.
“I just feel like people got the impression for some reason that I was slow and couldn’t change direction very well,” Dimick said. “So I felt like I did a good job today of show that’s incorrect, and that I’m overall just a good athlete.”
Apparently not so much, as the draft came and went without Dimick's name being called.
Now, Dimick doesn't have Myles Garrett's first step, or Solomon Thomas' leverage at the line of scrimmage.
But he was wildly productive in a big-time conference, and now he enters the NFL with a 65-pound chip on his shoulder.
I think the undrafted class is good, but I don’t see Dimick being the guy who headlines it. Amba Etta-Tawo, Avery Gennesy, and Parker Collins all have better chances to make the final 53-man roster, in my opinion. The defense has been a major priority in free agency and the offense still has a ways to go — so I could see at least one, maybe two, undrafted free agents making the roster on that side of the ball.