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2020 Jaguars path to the draft: Senior Bowl preview

The Jaguars will be keeping an eye on several key prospects during Senior Bowl week, which six players might they want to keep a closer eye on?

Reese’s Senior Bowl Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images

Now entering the offseason, the Jacksonville Jaguars will have a lot of work to do in preparation for the 2020 NFL Draft. With the Reese’s Senior Bowl kicking off this week, draft evaluations will kick into full gear, and the Jaguars will get to work to deciding which players could help their long-term future.

Starting today, seniors and graduating juniors from across the country will get together for an opportunity to showcase their talents in front of NFL scouts, coaches, media, and the fans. With the team having a ton of needs heading in the 2020 season, the Jaguars will have a close eye on several position groups participating in the event.

Entering 2020, the Jaguars will have several areas of interest including key position groups including the offensive and defensive lines, tight end, cornerback, and linebacker positions. After a disappointing 2019 which saw the team losing six of their final eight games of the season, it was clear plenty of holes remained in a sill-rebuilding roster.

Two key ares of interest for the Jaguars will come from their tight end position and their linebacker group. Both areas saw key talent lost to injuries, and depth which could not withstand the rigors of the regular season. Never able to get on a roll, the Jaguars settled for street free agents to fill those positions to no avail.

With that said, let’s take a look at six players the Jaguars may have their eye on this week as they attempt to better their roster.

1. Josh Jones, offensive tackle, Houston

Jones, 6’7”, 310 lbs., was a 45-game starter at Houston played exclusively at left tackle over the past four years as he looked to become one of the more underrated tackle prospects in the nation. Jones is a mauler of a man, and would help the Jaguars greatly in both the run, and pass game.

While all eyes have been on tackles such as Georgia’s Andrew Thomas or Iowa’s Tristan Wirfs, Jones will quickly see his draft stock rise among the masses after an impressive showing at the senior bowl.

During his senior season, Jones allowed only one sack and four pressures in 10 games according to Pro Football Focus. The Jaguars struggled mightily at the left tackle position last season as third-year tackle Cam Robinson was unable to return to form after tearing his ACL two games into the 2018 season.

2. Michael Pittman Jr., wide receiver, USC

Perhaps overshadowed due to how deep this class of wide receivers is, Pittman, 6-4, 220 pounds, is one of the more polished of the bunch. Honing into his route running skills this season, Pittman accounted for 101 receptions for 1,269 yards and 11 touchdowns in 2019, solidifying himself as one of the best receiver prospects in the country.

The Jaguars will want to get a good look at Pittman this week as they keep an eye out for a receiver to play opposite of DJ Chark Jr.

3. Neville Gallimore, defensive tackle, Oklahoma

Gallimore, 6-2, 301 pounds, is one of the best defensive linemen in the 2020 class and can play almost anywhere along the line whether at three-technique, nose tackle, or even strong-side defensive end. The Jaguars have a huge need at the position as incumbent nose tackle, Marcell Dareus was lost for the season only seven weeks into 2019.

With some doubt the team will bring Darues back at his $22M cap figure in 2020, the Jaguars could use Gallimore who accounted for 147 total tackles (67 solo), 17 tackles-for-loss, and 8.5 sacks (four during his senior season) during his four-year career as a Sooner.

As one of the most athletic defensive tackle prospects in in the draft, Gallimore has a chance to break Jets defensive tackle Quinnen Williams’ record-breaking sub 4.8 40-yard dash at the combine, the fastest 40-yard dash for 300+ pound football player.

4. Akeem Davis-Gaither, linebacker, Appalachian State

While he is on the smaller side for a linebacker at 6-2, 215 pounds, Davis-Gaither is one of the more rangy, athletic linebackers in college football. Playing all over the field at Appalachian State, Davis-Gaither accounted for 101 tackles (49 solo), 14.5 tackles-for-loss, and five sacks during his senior season.

The Jaguars struggled at the weak side-linebacker position last season as rookie linebacker Quincy Williams never was able to establish himself as the starter, with poor play and an injury in his first year at the position. Davis-Gaither will have an opportunity to show team scouts his ability to cover ground quickly and to make an impact on day one.

5. Kristian Fulton, cornerback, LSU

Fulton, 6-0, 200 pounds, is one of the best defensive back prospects in the nation. The former LSU Tiger is one of the smoothest cornerbacks in the country as he gets in and out of his backpedal with ease. While he is not the most aggressive cornerback Fulton isn’t necessarily afraid to take on contact.

Last season, Fulton surrendered only 31 receptions for 453 yards, and three touchdowns going up against some of the best receivers in the country in the SEC. The Jaguars have needed a replacement for Jalen Ramsey since the team traded him only five games into the 2019 season.

Fulton accounted for 38 tackles (28 solo), one tackle-for-loss and an interception during his senior season at LSU.

6. Harrison Bryant, tight end, FAU

Bryant, 6-5, 240 pounds is one of the most athletic tight ends in the country. After winning the 2019 Mackey award, given to the best tight end in the country, the former FAU Owl’s draft stock has risen tremendously. With 65 receptions for 1004 yards and seven touchdowns on the year, Bryant showed he’s one of the best receiving threats at tight end in the country.

The Jaguars struggled to get anything going at the tight end position this season as their leading tight end, James O’Shaughnessy (14 receptions, 153 yards, and two touchdowns) played only five games. The rest of the team’s tight ends accounted for a combined 39 receptions for 312 yards and one touchdown in 16 games.

Honorable mentions

DE Jonathan Greenard (Florida)

DT Javon Kinlaw (South Carolina)

DT Raekwon Davis (Alabama)

WR Collin Johnson (Texas)

WR Van Jefferson (Florida)

WR Brandon Ayiuk (Arizona State)