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Jaguars exploring trade for Hayden Hurst

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The Jaguars were going to draft Hurst in the 2018 NFL Draft, but now have the opportunity to get him via trade.

NFL: JAN 11 AFC Divisional Playoff - Titans at Ravens Photo by Mark Goldman/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Since being a first round draft pick in the 2018 NFL Draft, Baltimore Ravens tight end Hayden Hurst has disappointed considering his draft status. Now, he’s being talked about as a potential Jaguars trade target.

According to Florida Times-Union columnist Eugene Frenette, the Jaguars along with the New England Patriots are exploring a trade for the 6’4, 260 pound tight end. Frenette also reports that the only thing that would hold up the trade process is what draft capital teams would be willing to give up.

Despite being a first-round pick, Hurst rarely saw the field for the Ravens, having only played in 41 percent of offensive snaps for the Ravens last year. He has a relatively clean bill of health, only missing 4 games in his career due to a stress fracture in his foot.

The Jaguars had one of the worst tight end rooms in the NFL last year, with zero of the tight ends on the roster getting over 200 yards receiving on the season. Josh Oliver and Geoff Swaim have both been swings and misses at the position, and James O’Shaughnessy couldn’t stay healthy. In new offensive coordinator Jay Gruden’s offense, tight ends are used heavily, and have seen athletic targets such as Tyler Eifert for the Bengals or Jordan Reed for the Redskins have productive seasons. Hurst has shown the ability to stretch the field in the snaps that he’s played, but getting on the field has been the biggest problem.

I wouldn’t mind the Jaguars kicking the tires on the Jacksonville native, considering he doesn’t have a lot of wear and tear. If the Jaguars offer a late round pick for Hurst, maybe the seventh-round pick this year, that would give them the ability to have Hurst for good value, considering that the Ravens tight end is better than any Jaguars tight end on the roster, with some of them possibly being cap casualties. However, I’m not sure that Hurst is better than any tight end in this upcoming NFL Draft, and he’s considerably worse than the prize tight ends in this free agent class.

Any option is a good option considering the lack of value at the position last year, and the Jaguars need to examine all alleys to improve the tight end position before the 2020 season.