Happy New Year to everyone out there - especially to Jaguars fans.
Here is where head coaches and general managers really make their money - in the off season. With the New Year upon us and the need for improvements almost everywhere with this team, there are some things this franchise must have. It starts with free agency, continues with the draft and ends when this team completes the 2014-15 season. This should be a better team next season, but this is still an organization that believes in taking small steps to a brighter future.
That also means this is a team that has some resolutions to fulfill. Here are three they hope they can stick to…
To stay at third in the 2014 NFL Draft
There will be plenty of temptation to trade up for Teddy Bridgewater or trade down to get more picks and possibly select Derek Carr of Fresno State. Whatever the case may be - the Jaguars must stay where they are and hope for a good deal. I believe at the third slot, they can get Jadeveon Clowney. And even if Jaguars fans are made at the idea this team did not get the quarterback, they got the best defensive lineman in this draft class. There is nothing wrong with the way general manager David Caldwell is running this team.
Commit to Justin Blackmon - AGAIN!
Here is the real issue with Blackmon. He has a substance abuse problem and has not shown he can keep clean. On the flip side, he is as gifted a receiver the league has seen in years and if he hones his skills and his off season crap (yes, I said that) - he could be Michael Irvin. The Jaguars drafted the best receiver in 2012, they drafted the best lineman in Luke Joeckel in 2012 and could have the best passer or defensive lineman in 2013. The team also knows, if they release him, some other team will scoop him up (New England) and he will be a star. We cannot let our potential “trash” be someone else’s treasure.
Find a way to keep the veterans happy
The team assuredly will keep Paul Posluszny on the team and possibly ask him to take a pay cut. The team must do the same for other prominent veterans. The Jaguars cannot go into 2014 without the services of defensive end Jason Babin, tight end Marcedes Lewis and running back Maurice Jones-Drew. While Drew might be the most expendable of the three, it is still ill advised. If Lewis and Babin will restructure their contracts and Jones-Drew will realize he must take a solid offer, not a huge offer, and reduce his workload, this all works out in the end.