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2009 NFL Draft Will Define The 2011 Jacksonville Jaguars

July 15th, 2011 at 5:40 PM
By Brendan Sonnone
Jacksonville Jaguars Terrance Knighton (96) celebrates his interception of a Jon Kitna pass during the first half of their NFL game October 31, 2010 at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas. UPI/Ian Halperin

The term “build through the daft” is a common idiom that most NFL fans have heard time and time again.

Make the right picks, especially early on, and your team will routinely have a steady foundation to work with. Miss enough times and the franchise becomes irrelevant. 
Nowhere may that mindset be more evident than when looking at the Jacksonville Jaguars’ 2009 draft.
The Jaguars had nine selections that years and eight of those players will be a critical part of the 2011 squad. In fact, the octuplet’s success or failures likely determines if the Jaguars can contend for a playoff spot.

1.Round One (8)- Eugene Monroe OT- Hasn’t live up to his draft status yet but he hasn’t been as bad as some of his stats indicate. Monroe is a good run blocker and had some good performances against division foes last year. As the left tackle, his progress will determine how well-rounded the offense can be.
2.Round Two (39)- Eben Britton OT- Started 15 games as a rookie but played in only seven last year because of injuries. He was inconsistent leading up to his shoulder problems and who knows how safe his job as starting right tackle will be if he doesn’t pick up his overall play.  
3.Round Three (72)- Terrance Knighton DT- Has been simply monstrous. Knighton is developing into an elite tackle and as long as “Pot Roast” keeps the weight off, he should be a stellar foundation for Jacksonville’s defense for years to come.
4.Round Three (73)-  Derek Cox CB- Was impressive as a rookie but suffered a sophomore slump in 2010. Was it poor safety play that hindered Cox’s progress or did he simply struggle? He should be the starting corner when the season begins and the Jaguars desperately need him to rebound. 
5.Round Four (107)- Mike Thomas WR- Will be Jacksonville’s top target this season. Thomas has proven to be a steal in the fourth round and the Jaguars’ will now see if he was a good pickup or a great one.
6.Round Five (144)- Jarett Dillard WR- Injuries have hindered him but Dillard as the quickness and hands to be a solid slot receiver for the Jaguars. Currently, the team doesn’t have many other options to work the slot so Dillard stepping up would mean a lot for balance sake. 
7.Round Six (180)- Zach Miller TE – The converted quarterback is a real-nice option behind Marcedes Lewis and is a real good receiver. 
8.Round Seven (250)- Rashad Jennings RB – Another steal for the Jaguars. Jennings might see an increased role behind Maurice Jones-Drew and seems to have the ability to form a great one-two punch with MJD. 
9.Round Seven (253)- Tiquan Underwood WR – Has been disappointing and likely won’t return. 
As the breakdown indicates, almost all of the 2009 draft class will be significant players for the Jaguars in 2011 and how they perform will go a long way in determining if this was a good or bad class for Jacksonville. 
Tags: Derek Cox, draft, Eben Britton, Eugene Monroe, Jacksonville Jaguars, Jaguars, Mike Thomas, NFL, Terrance Knighton, Zach Miller

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