Of course, “likely” is the word you need to note here. There’s always a chance that come Friday morning, we’ll be able to look back at this post and laugh uproariously. We aim to entertain.
But for the record, as of Monday here’s the latest company line from Jaguars general manger David Caldwell…
Caldwell says he’ll be surprised if they don’t draft second. #jaguars
— John Oehser (@JohnOehser) April 22, 2013
Although pegging the trade hot spots during any draft is often a game that’s akin to predicting the weather (it’s wind! It blows everywhere!), if the Jaguars decide that Geno Smith isn’t their savior and guiding light, consequently holding an auction for the No. 2 pick seemed highly possible.
But if there’s even several kernels or grains or whatever of truth to the words above from Caldwell, then we may be looking at further evidence of a Smith tumble, especially with the Ryan Nassib to Buffalo at No. 8 train starting to move at warp speed.
In his latest mock posted earlier this morning, Rotoworld’s leading draft prognosticator Josh Norris gave Nassib to the Bills in that lofty top 10 slot. Sure, he still has Smith going to the Jags…at 26th after a trade back into the first round.
The Nassib-Buffalo connection is strong and abundantly obvious. I’m not sure if you’ve heard this, but he was Doug Marrone’s quarterback at Syracuse, and in a swift twist of fate, Marrone is now the Bills’ new head coach. So although Smith may arguably have more upside, if the comfort level between Nassib and Marrone is indeed that strong, getting him as the team’s quarterback of the future makes a whole lot of sense.
And although it may seem like a reach right now, that means drafting Nassib at the earliest possible opportunity makes sense too. The Jaguars will be on the clock again in the second round long before the Bills at 41st overall, and the Jets — another QB-needy team — are an even greater threat following the Darrelle Revis trade. New general manager John Idzik now has three picks in the top 40 to work with, and in a draft year when assuming anything is rather unwise, banking on one of those picks being used on a quarterback feels pretty damn safe.
So if the Bills truly do have an exceedingly high grade on Nassib due to both what they see on the field and the chemistry with Marrone, then they’ll have to ensure they’re not beaten to him. And doing that likely means making Nassib a top 10 pick.
It’ll be a classic case of prioritizing need and necessity over draft value.