Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Pass Rush Addressed in Latter Rounds

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Pass Rush Addressed in Latter Rounds

Article excerpt

Byline: Hays Carlyon

The Jaguars made no secret they were going to devote the majority of their draft resources to rebuilding the porous defense.

General manager Dave Caldwell went above and beyond.

The Jaguars didn't stop after landing the draft's best combination of talent in Florida State cornerback Jalen Ramsey and UCLA linebacker Myles Jack in the first two rounds. After selecting Maryland defensive end Yannick Nagkoue in Friday's third round, Caldwell continued the splurge on Saturday to try and fix the league's 31st-ranked scoring defense from last season.

The Jaguars closed the draft's final day by choosing three more defenders: Notre Dame defensive tackle Sheldon Day (fourth round, pick No. 103), Montana defensive end Tyrone Holmes (sixth round, No. 181) and Central Arkansas defensive end Jonathan Woodard (seventh round, No. 226).

"Our goal was to affect the passing game and we did that," Caldwell said. "Get faster, younger, more athletic and to help us on third down. I think every player we took, we had that in mind."

The Jaguars lack of a pass rush was the biggest problem during last season's 5-11 campaign.

"You can't overemphasize enough the need for [pass] rush," Jaguars coach Gus Bradley said. "So, to bring in those guys that have ability to rush the quarterback was big for us."

The lone offensive player was added with the team's second sixth-round pick, acquired in the trade sending kicker Josh Scobee to Pittsburgh last year. Caldwell took Arkansas quarterback Brandon Allen as a developmental talent.

This was the first time in franchise history the Jaguars started the draft with five defensive prospects.

"I felt that we had a firm directive and direction where we wanted to go and how we wanted to attack this thing," said Paul Roell, assistant director of college scouting. "I do not know if it could have played out much better than it has for us."

The Jaguars needed to prioritize defense, but the extent was somewhat surprising. The offensive line didn't receive any help in the draft.

That wasn't especially unique. …

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