With the seventh pick in the 2012 BGN Community Mock Draft, Snax selects...
Melvin Ingram: DE, South Carolina
With as many needs as the Jaguars have going into the draft, one could made a case for just about any player left on the draft board. When you look at all of the factors that derailed the Jaguars 2011 campaign, such as a decision to cut their starting quarterback and numerous to their offensive line and defense, you can see that this team is in a major need of playmakers and depth.
The main question for the Jags is "Where do we start ?". A lot of people will point out the deficiencies on offenses as a major jumping off point. The Jaguars took a step in the right direction by signing Laurent Robinson in free agency. Most people will agree that Robinson alone will not be able to fix all of the Jacksonville's offensive struggles. However, one thing that this move does is give the Jaguars more of an option to focus on other areas of need throughout the team. With the wide receiver position being fairly deep in this years drafts, Jaguars can look to draft someone who will add some explosiveness to the defense.
More after the jump...
Aside from their star running back, Maurice Jones-Drew, the Jaguars defense was one of the few bright spots on the team. The unit ranked 6th in total yards and 11th in scoring defense. While the defense compiled some pretty impressive stats, you could clearly see the units flaws when the Jaguars played against some of the better offenses of the NFL. In games against New Orleans, Cincinnati, San Diego and Atlanta, it is clear the Jaguars struggle to get the opposing teams offense off of the field. A bad situation became worse as injuries started pile up towards the end of the year. Of all of the positions on the defense that could use an upgrade or depth, the biggest whole would be the defensive end. Jeremy Mincey had a pretty good year, racking up 8 sacks from the left end. On the right end the Jaguars had to experiment with unproven commodities as their starter, Aaron Kampman, was put on injured reserve midway through the year after already missing every game of the regular season up to that point.
With health being a major question mark surrounding Kampann, the Jags will look for someone that will be able to put add some explosiveness to their front seven and get after the quarterback. In comes Melvin Ingram, who made his name known with a superb senior season at South Carolina in which he compiled 48 tackles and 10 sacks. The Jaguars will most likely be turned off by Quinton Coples questionable effort and the believe that Coples would be a fit in a 3-4 defensive scheme do a lack of explosiveness around edges. Instead the Jaguars will be attracted to Ingram's impeccable work effort and high motor as they look to add some speed to a unit who only managed 31 sacks (tied for 25th in the league).
Melvin Ingram will fit nicely into Mel Tuckers defensive game plan. Ingram will be able to use his low center of gravity to get the edge around tackles and use his explosiveness to get to the quarterback. He also has the ability to use his strength to line up closer to a defensive tackle position and power his way to a pass rusher. He will also be able to use his leverage to get and technique shove off blockers in order to wrap up ball carriers in the backfield. The Jaguars will be looking at draft to find a pass rushing lineman, and they will get it when they sign Ingram.
The Jaguars have had their share of busts when it comes to drafting defensive ends. In 2008 the Jaguars drafted Derrick Harvey with their first round pick and Quentin Groves with their second, in an effort to give the franchise their first good pass rushing defensive end since Tony Brackens retired in 2003. Both picks turned out to be failures as the Jaguars began their downward spiral to bottom of the league. The Jaguars will look to their defensive coordinator Mel Tucker and defensive line coach Joe Cullen to help Ingram improve on any areas that Ingram will need help in. The Jaguars see a lot of potential in Ingram and they think that with some coaching combined with Ingram's already great athleticism, versatility and technique, he could become one of the top pass rushers in the league.
Next on the clock will be wildcatlh with the Miami Dolphins.