With the conference championship games last week I took a quick break from the team spotlights. This week we’re getting back on track with an update of the five teams I previously covered. The needs and potential draft location for the Jacksonville Jaguars, Houston Texans, Atlanta Falcons,Tampa Bay Buccaneers and St. Louis Rams have change.
The Texans have had the biggest change because they’re now in the driver’s seat for the No. 1 pick. This is such an interesting team because they have a ton of talent but just haven’t been able to put it all together. Most have pointed fingers at Gary Kubiak which is why he was fired after this past week’s game. Houston is now in position to land any player they want including one of the top quarterback prospects. The issue facing the Texans is that they need to decide if any of the quarterbacks are worthy of the top pick in the draft. At this point, Louisville’s Teddy Bridgewater is in the mix but will need strong work outs to solidify his positioning.
The Rams have two first round picks again this year—holding Washington’s potential No. 2 pick from the Robert Griffin III trade. In this spot it would make a ton of sense for the Rams to target help along the offensive line. Texas A&M’s Jake Matthews would be a great fit as he provides an immediate upgrade at right tackle while also providing an eventual replacement for Jake Long on the left side.
South Carolina’s Jadeveon Clowney didn’t have a great season, but he’s still worthy of a top five pick. The Falcons would jump at the chance to add him to the mix. This is a team searching for a marquee defensive player—especially one who can generate pressure on the quarterback. Clowney would also benefit from the opportunity to learn from Osi Umenyiora.
There’s some positive buzz building around the Jacksonville Jaguars franchise thanks to some recent strong performances. However, they’ve basically taken themselves out of the mix for the No. 1 pick with their latest wins. Now on track to land the No. 6 pick, Jacksonville could have a hard time landing atop-notch quarterback prospect. Outside of the obvious need at quarterback, Jacksonville could look to upgrade their pass rush. Someone like UCLA’s Anthony Barr would make sense as a hybrid defensive end/linebacker. Gus Bradley has used undersized pass-rushers like Bruce Irvin in the past.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers may have found their quarterback of the future in Mike Glennon. Heading into the season Glennon looked really raw and like he may need time to develop. The biggest concern I had with him heading into the draft were issues protecting the football. However, limiting turnovers has been one of the many areas where he has succeeded. The development of Glennon will allow the Buccaneers to focus on other positions early in the draft. Addressing the offensive line or adding a pass rusher should be on the top of their list. Buffalo’s Khalil Mack would be an interesting fit in a Von Miller type role. Mack is a tremendous athlete who plays all over the place for Buffalo, but his length and quickness gives him a ton of upside as a pass rusher.
Check back next week I as return to the single team format!