Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Top Draft Prospects Visit Jaguars; OTs Joeckel and Fisher, along with LB Jordan, Talk to Team Officials

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Top Draft Prospects Visit Jaguars; OTs Joeckel and Fisher, along with LB Jordan, Talk to Team Officials

Article excerpt

Byline: Ryan O'Halloran

Continuing an evaluation process that started months ago, the Jaguars hosted three highly regarded draft prospects at EverBank Field on Wednesday.

Visiting with team officials were left tackles Luke Joeckel of Texas A&M and Eric Fisher of Central Michigan and linebacker Dion Jordan of Oregon.

All three are projected to go among the top 10 picks in this month's NFL Draft, including Joeckel or Fisher first overall to Kansas City.

The Jaguars have the No. 2 pick, and Internet mock drafts have linked them to all three players.

Having top-end prospects for local visits represents a change of philosophy for the Jaguars.

Former general manager Gene Smith preferred to host players viewed as available in the middle to late rounds. New general manager Dave Caldwell will have a parade of players coming to town, some first-round players and others who could be considered in the second and/or third rounds.

Each team is allowed to have 30 players visit.

Florida defensive tackle Shariff Floyd, Florida State quarterback EJ Manuel and Texas A&M receiver Ryan Swope have visited. Additionally, Arizona quarterback Matt Scott, Florida International safety Jonathan Cyprien and South Carolina safety D.J. Swearinger have reportedly been in contact with the Jaguars.

Coach Gus Bradley said a team can get a better gauge on how the draft pick will transition to the pro game during the visit.

"I've seen enough of them on film, so it's more where his mind is and how they handle different situations," Bradley said. "Being a rookie in the NFL is very difficult. ... I have 30 minutes with them. But at the end of some of these meetings, you get a pretty good feel."

Joeckel (6-foot-6, 306 pounds at the scouting combine) has been at the top of the draft board since he declared for the draft after starting all 39 games of his three-year career at Texas A&M.

"Definitely coming into this thing, I wanted to be the first tackle taken in the draft," Joeckel said in late February. "I know it's a long process until then and I'm trying to do every single thing right to make that happen. …

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