The Jacksonville Jaguars are going to take Trevor Lawrence No. 1 overall in the 2021 NFL Draft a week from Thursday. That much has already pretty much been confirmed by the former Clemson quarterback.
Lawrence has been the consensus top pick in the draft since his freshman season with the Tigers. He’s seen as a generational prospect in the same vein as Peyton Manning and Andrew Luck.
The question now is whether Jacksonville even debated going in another direction or trading down from the top pick. General manager Trent Baalke addressed that during a Q&A with reporters on Wednesday, indicating that the Jaguars have indeed fielded calls for the first pick.
“We’ve fielded a couple of calls, but I think we’re going to hold tight,” Baalke said. “Again that decision is made organizationally and our ownership is involved with that as well.”
In a quarterback class many are comparing to the 1983 iteration with John Elway, Jim Kelly and Dan Marino, Lawrence seemingly stands above the rest. As such, there’s an expectation that quarterbacks will be off the board with the first three picks. In fact, five signal callers could go within the top-10 selections. That includes the high likelihood of Zach Wilson going two to the New York Jets.
The San Francisco 49ers likely put in a call to their former general manager in Jacksonville. San Francisco traded up from the 12th pick to No. 3 overall with the Miami Dolphins, yielding two future first-round selections and a third-rounder to find their quarterback of the future.
We also have to look at the Carolina Panthers as a potential trade option with the Jacksonville Jaguars. Prior to making a move for Sam Darnold, Carolina was in on Deshaun Watson. It also reportedly offered up the No. 8 overall pick and change to the Detroit Lions for Matthew Stafford before he was dealt to the Los Angeles Rams.
Baalke did note that the decision will ultimately be up to owner Shad Khan. Even after bringing in Urban Meyer as their new head coach, it was made clear that Khan would have some say over player personnel matters.
Regardless, it now seems to be a foregone conclusion that Trevor Lawrence will be heading to Jacksonville to be the face of the Jaguars’ franchise. Of course, that could change if a team like the 49ers offer up a package that Jacksonville finds too hard to pass up on.
Right now, that doesn’t seem to be in the cards.