It’s been a few days and the entire draft hysteria has settled a bit. And yet, I am still on some kind of euphoric high like I just ran a marathon for fun and found out I actually won without trying. How did David Caldwell channel the great John Henry Anderson and pull this rabbit out of the hat? How did Jalen Ramsey and Myles Jack both land with the Jacksonville Jaguars?
It's like the NBA’s Orlando Magic landing Shaquille O'Neal and Penny Hardaway, except that took two drafts. This took one. It's that epic of a moment. It is an ESPN 30 For 30 documentary in the making. Is it too late to convince HBO that Jacksonville is the place to be for Hard Knocks in 2016 and not Los Angeles? Whatever - lets’ hit Vegas, Dave - you are on a roll.
So how did it really happen? With a lot of help. So, let’s give special thanks to those who really do deserve making this magic moment a reality.
Thanks to Philadelphia and Los Angeles for being so quarterback needy. And thank you Blake Bortles for proving you have the potential to be a franchise quarterback (4,428 passing yards & 35 TD’s).
Thanks to San Diego for deciding that Joey Bosa was their guy. They could have gone with either Ramsey or Bosa at that point. You can’t judge them poorly for picking Bosa. He’s a solid positional player that could be a 10 year stud. But, that left Ramsey on the board.
Thanks to the gentleman, Jerry Jones, who made it all possible. Haunted by the loss of DeMarco Murray in free agency last year, he opted for running back Ezekiel Elliot over Ramsey.
Thanks to Ozzie Newsome and the Baltimore Ravens for (1) not being willing to give up a 3rd round pick to move up and grab Ramsey. According to ESPN Staff Writer, Jamison Hensley, Ozzie was only willing to give up a 4th rounder to move up and thus missed out on Ramsey when the Cowboys moved forward and selected Elliott.
At five. . .David Caldwell did what he had to do. He pulled the trigger on Ramsey, sliding a true #1 corner and difference maker into a deprived secondary, strengthening it for years to come. Then, while Caldwell looked at realistic options at 38, something magical began to happen. Everything went Dave’s way. All the draft dominoes fell in the Jaguars favor. Dave simply had to lay in wait and ready to pounce.
A special thanks is due to the other 30 scaredy-cat NFL teams who sought need over talent and passed on the opportunity to draft Myles Jack. Like Moses parting the seas, this left a top 5 prospect available at 36 and Caldwell could barely contain his excitement. The Jaguar that laid in wait, now pounced. Cool Caldwell dialed up Ozzie in Baltimore and said something like, “Come on Ozzie. . .you can’t hold back destiny. I’ll give you a 5th rounder."
And, so a very special thank you is due Ozzie Newsome for trading back and allowing us to grab the 2nd difference maker in the draft.
Cue the streamers in the Jags war room.
Cue NFL Network analyst Mike Mayock’s comment, “The Jaguars are now a play-off team.”
Cue the realistic expectations. Yes, realistic expectations that they should be drastically improved in 2016. What’s realistic? A better record? Absolutely. At least 8 wins. Play-offs? Maybe. Super Bowl? Come on it’s May - everyone has a shot. Even us.
I just imagine, Dave high-fiving in the war room, but trying to keep it together. Professional. Driving home later, he must have rolled the windows down and dropped in Geto Boys "Damn It Feels Good To Be A Gangta.” I know I did.
Turn it up, Dave. Enjoy it. This is your moment.
How would you rate the Jaguars Draft?
Filmmaker | Sports Enthusiast