Jalen Ramsey, DB, Florida State
For the first time in nearly a decade the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2015 began to show promise that a return to the playoffs may soon be near. Blake Bortles, while wildly erratic at times, is slowly developing into the QB Jacksonville was hoping for when they drafted him 3rd overall, the trio of Allen Robinson, Allen Hurns, and Julius Thomas is one of the best and also most underrated receiving trios in the league, and the duo of TJ Yeldon and Chris Ivory forms a more than adequate RBC. Oline is a major hole but there is no way in hell I'd pick Ronnie Stanley #5 (And I suffer hardcore from ND bias). However, for all the promise that was shown by the Jaguars offense, the defense was just straight up unbearable to watch.
The Jaguars defense finished 2015, 31st in scoring and 28th in passing, a particularly depressing stat when you realize they played Hasselbeck and Hoyer twice. Looking at free agency, it's clear the Jaguars recognize they needed to beef up their defense if they are to have any hope of competing in the AFC South. Jaguars came of the gates big by spending $90 Million on Malik Jackson, signing Free Safety Tashaun Gipson to a 5 year deal worth $35.5 million, and signing Prince Amukamara to a 1 year deal. When you factor in the return of Dante Fowler Jr. the major holes remaining on defense are CB, SS, and Linebacker making this draft essentially a choice between Miles Jack and Jalen Ramsey.
Myles Jack is a freak athlete, high motor, high IQ player, and is going to have a great career. Having a team where Posluszny is you're 2nd best linebacker is terrible situation, and when I took on the job of GM for the Jaguars I did so with every intention of drafting Jack. But I never expected Jalen Ramsey to fall to 5th. Jalen Ramsey is the best player in this draft, the only reason he is still available is because Tunsil/Wentz/Goff all play positions of higher value, and apparently kamjam is Jerry Jones in disguise. Myles Jack projects as an ILB/SS Hybrid, which has equal if not less value than the Corner or Safety Ramsey is projected as. Meanwhile Ramsey is the better football player, equally as athletic, has the higher floor, and the higher ceiling. The Jaguars need to go BPA, and there is no way the best player available is anyone other than Ramsey.
Jalen Ramsey checks off every block for a stud defensive back, at 6-1 209 lbs. he has great size, his 4.41 yard 40 allows him to keep up with all but the fastest receivers, and his 41.5 inch vertical means he is explosive enough to still be able to make a play on the ball, even when he is beat deep. But beyond the physical attributes his mental abilities are amazing as well. Ramsey excels at play recognition, and is quick to trust his instincts and will rush in to blow up the play. This play against Virginia is perhaps my favorite example: 4th down with 5 minutes left 4th and 6, Ramsey Drops into Zone coverage guarding the sticks. As the play develops Ramsey reads the play, and is breaking to the ball before the ball is in the air Loss of yards, Turnover on Downs, Game Over.
Ramsey does not excel in just coverage though, which really impresses me is Ramsey's performance on the Blitz. Take these two play against Clemson which showcase multiple elements of what make Ramsey special. In the first highlight the first thing you notice is how Ramsey absolutely destroys the running back tossing him back like a ragdoll, but watching closely you can tell he is keeping his eyes on Watson and keeping contain. How often do you see a rusher blow right past the QB and leave a wide open rushing lane. Ramsey see Watson tuck the ball, and he quickly jump steps back to keep contain, forcing Watson back inside where he helps clean-up for the sack.
The list play is one of his best blitzes, where his playmaking instincts are really on display. This is textbook form for a blind side strip sack; there are DEs in the draft wishing they looked as good as Ramsey here.
The NFL is at a changing point in its defensive mindset. For this first time in history two thirds of all defensive snaps came with five defensive backs on the field. As teams are passing more than ever, having a quality secondary is vital to success, and having a hybrid defensive back like Ramsey opens up entirely new scheme options. People are concerned that there is no natural position for Ramsey, however I think Tyrann Mathieu is a great template for Ramsey's potential. Mathieu is the heart and soul of the Cardinals defense, and is the spoke around which the entire defense operates. Ramsey lacks the interceptions of Mathieu, but he offers the same playmaking ability and on field leadership that makes everyone better. Ramsey can cover any receiver or tight end, in the slot or on the outside, he can blitz
Jalen Ramsey is not going to step in from day 1 and be a lockdown corner, he only has on year at the position and at times struggles with the nuances of the position, especially against quicker more elusive receivers, he will need to improve his tackling to take on some of the bigger backs and receivers in the NFL. However Ramsey is a dominant athlete, who will step in and start from day one He is a leader on and off the football field, who has never once had his work ethic called into question. He is aggressive and plays with a swagger that has been missing from Jacksonville for several years. He lacks all the warning signs that a player doesn't have what it takes to make it in the pros, and he has every skill you desire from a defensive back. Jalen Ramsey was the first freshman defensive back to start for Florida State since Deion Sanders, 27 years ago Primetime was selected #5 overall. Some say its coincidence, I call it fate.
2016 BGN Mock Draft Order
1) Titans (ablesser88) - Laremy Tunsil, OT, Ole Miss - [Explanation]
2) Browns ( Genius) - Carson Wentz, QB, North Dakota State - [Explanation]
3) Chargers (StoneColeKiller58) - Jared Goff, QB, Cal - [Explanation]
4) Cowboys (kamjam) - Ezekiel Elliott, RB, Ohio State - [Explanation]
5) Jaguars (drc242) - Jalen Ramsey, DB, Florida State - [Explanation]
6) Ravens (rohan915) -
7) 49ers (LAOJoe) -
8) Eagles (slickpablovick) -
9) Buccaneers (OneBucFan47) -
10) Giants (Paulie97) -
11) Bears (Kiko's Delivery Service) -
12) Saints (kylebruneault) -
13) Dolphins (wildcatlh) -
14) Raiders (Luxury_Used_Vehicles_By_Braman) -
15) Rams (NowWhat?) -
16) Lions (bri g) -
17) Falcons (thealien2696) -
18) Colts (ei78) -
19) Bills (naderg43) -
20) Jets (Quacking_Eagle) -
21) Washington (TheCoxishere) -
22) Texans (jeppsforst) -
23) Vikings (WScott151) -
24) Bengals (burkhart_b) -
25) Steelers (theaction) -
26) Seahawks (tfrank9811) -
27) Packers (3Trace) -
28) Chiefs (jawmo) -
N/A) Patriots - Cheaters
29) Cardinals (big DUB) -
30) Panthers (zatch2k) -
31) Broncos (JALupowitz) -