The team is looking at a top 10 pick and will assuredly draft an offensive player. Maybe even a quarterback.
Rookie quarterback Blaine Gabbert has struggled mightily this season, completing 49 percent of his passes and throwing eight touchdowns to seven interceptions.
Sure, rookies are supposed to struggle, so it’s not the numbers that are super concerning with Gabbert. He lacks weapons to throw to and has been in a toxic situation with the team’s coaching turmoil. It’s more the intangibles, or lack thereof, that will likely have the Jaguars looking at quarterbacks when April rolls around.
Gabbert is scared in the pocket. He folds under pressure and once something bad happens, he’s done for the rest of the game. Quarterbacks aren’t supposed to like contact, but they aren’t supposed to fear it either like Gabbert does.
These, more or less, are not things that change with experience. We are talking about Gabbert’s mentality, something that has been built on for more than 20 years of living. He’s shown plenty signs of potential, but it’s shocking to watch how quickly he falls back down to earth when things don’t go right.
The Jaguars could surround Gabbert with tons of Pro Bowl talent and it ultimately wouldn’t mean a thing because the guy seems unable to get out of his own way.
Jacksonville fans and anyone in the organization is crazy if they think Gabbert do a 180 in the next few years. It’s just not happening, people don’t change who they are and how they naturally react to things in one year.
If Jacksonville GM Gene Smith subscribes to that theory—he’s a smart, insightful guy so he probably does at least to a certain degree—then he’ll have no choice than to take a long, hard look at USC’s Matt Barkley, Baylor’s Robert Griffin and Oklahoma’s Landry Jones.
Remember, this isn’t the NFL of the past decade where a team was married to a top draft pick for a few years, for better or worse. Contracts for top 10 picks are significantly more reasonable under the new CBA, meaning that the Jaguars could get rid of Gabbert and target another quarterback without too big a consequence.