Jacksonville Jaguars: Riley Cooper

What the Jaguars can expect in the draft

April, 8, 2014
4/08/14
4:00
PM ET
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- The Jacksonville Jaguars have 11 picks in the 2014 NFL draft, which begins a month from today. It’ll be the second go-around for general manager David Caldwell, who seems to have put together a solid first draft class.

What kind of talent can Caldwell expect to find when he makes his selections (Nos. 3, 39, 70, 105, 114, 144, 150, 159, 179, 205 and 222)? Here’s a look at the player selected at each of those spots the past five years.

Some have turned out pretty good. Some haven’t worked out at all. But it’s fun to look back and see some recognizable and not-so-recognizable names.

Round 1 (No. 3 overall)

2013: DE Dion Jordan (Oregon) by Miami.

2012: RB Trent Richardson (Alabama) by Cleveland.

2011: DT Marcell Dareus (Alabama) by Buffalo.

2010: DT Gerald McCoy (Oklahoma) by Tampa Bay.

2009: DE Tyson Jackson (LSU) by Kansas City.

Round 2 (No. 39 overall)

2013: QB Geno Smith (West Virginia) by the New York Jets.

2012: CB Janoris Jenkins (North Alabama) by St. Louis.

2011: LB Akeem Ayers (UCLA) by Tennessee.

2010: WR Arrelious Benn (Illinois) by Tampa Bay.

2009: OT Eben Britton (Arizona) by Jacksonville.

Round 3 (No. 70 overall)

2013: CB Blidi Wreh-Wilson (Connecticut) by Tennessee.

2012: P Bryan Anger (California) by Jacksonville.

2011: LB Justin Houston (Georgia) by Tennessee.

2010: TE Ed Dickson (Oregon) by Baltimore.

2009: DE Michael Johnson (Georgia Tech) by Cincinnati.

Round 4 (No. 105 overall)

2013: FS Duke Williams (Nevada) by Buffalo.

2012: LB Nigel Bradham (FSU) by Buffalo.

2011: RB Roy Helu (Nebraska) by Washington.

2010: DB Trevard Lindley (Kentucky) by Philadelphia.

2009: DE Henry Melton (Texas) by Chicago.

Round 4 (No. 114 overall)

2013: CB B.W. Webb (William & Mary) by Dallas.

2012: DT Jaye Howard (Florida) by Seattle.

2011: WR Cecil Shorts (Mount Union) by Jacksonville.

2010: TE Dennis Pitta (Brigham Young) by Baltimore.

2009: DB David Bruton (Notre Dame) by Denver.

Round 5 (No. 144 overall)

2013: WR Kenny Stills (Oklahoma) by New Orleans.

2012: OT Zebrie Sanders (FSU) by Buffalo.

2011: DB Shiloh Keo (Idaho) by Houston.

2010: DB Sherrick McManis (Northwestern) by Houston.

2009: WR Jarrett Dillard (Rice) by Jacksonville.

Round 5 (No. 150 overall)

2013: CB Terry Hawthorne (Illinois) by Pittsburgh.

2012: G Rokevious Watkins (South Carolina) by St. Louis.

2011: OT Jason Pinkston (Pittsburgh) by Cleveland.

2010: P Zoltan Mesko (Michigan) by New England.

2009: LB Jasper Brinkley (South Carolina) by Minnesota.

Round 5 (No. 159 overall)

2013: CB Micah Hyde (Iowa) by Green Bay.

2012: RB Chris Rainey (Florida) by Pittsburgh.

2011: TE Lee Smith (Marshall) by New England.

2010: WR Riley Cooper (Florida) by Philadelphia.

2009: OT Fenuki Tupou (Oregon) by Philadelphia.

Round 6 (No. 179 overall)

2013: LB Tourek Williams (FIU) by San Diego.

2012: G Andrew Tiller (Syracuse) by New Orleans.

2011: G Caleb Schlauderaff (Utah) by Green Bay.

2010: OT Sam Young (Notre Dame) by Dallas.

2009: DB Morgan Trent (Michigan) by Cincinnati.

Round 6 (No. 205 overall)

2013: DT Stacy McGee (Oklahoma) by Oakland.

2012: DT Billy Winn (Boise State) by Cleveland.

2011: DE Lazarius Levingston (LSU) by Seattle.

2010: G Ted Larsen (N.C. State) by new England.

2009: DT Ra’Shon Harris (Oregon) by Pittsburgh.

Round 7 (No. 222 overall)

2013: TE Chris Gragg (Arkansas) by Buffalo.

2012: LB Caleb McSurdy (Montana) by Dallas.

2011: DB Anthony Gaitor (FIU) by Tampa Bay.

2010: WR Marc Mariani (Montana) by Tennessee.

2009: P Pat McAfee (West Virginia) by Indianapolis.
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- It would be hard for the Jacksonville Jaguars to blow their first-round draft pick.

General manager David Caldwell and coach Gus Bradley have so much talent from which to choose at No. 3 that it would be hard to find fault with whatever decision they made. Jadeveon Clowney, Khalil Mack, Sammy Watkins, Greg Robinson, or any of the three quarterbacks are all good options.

The same applies for the second round as well, especially if the Jaguars are going offense because Caldwell said this is a deep draft for offensive talent.

It's on the third day of the draft, however, where it gets a lot tougher. How the Jaguars perform in Rounds 4-7 will be the key to the success of the draft, Bradley said.

"I think that's where we really have to do well," Bradley said. "The first round, obviously, and the second round you have to do some things there. But this draft will be determined by how well we do in those rounds.

"Example: Richard Sherman, Kam Chancellor, guys like that can make a big difference there. We focus on all areas, but that's an area that we've got to concentrate on, too."

Sherman (2011) and Chancellor (2010) were both fifth-round picks who developed into key members of the Seattle secondary. That's the kind of result for which the Jaguars are hoping for this year.

They've set themselves up with enough ammunition. Because of trades with Baltimore, Detroit and San Francisco, the Jaguars have eight picks in rounds 4-7, including three in fifth round. That should increase their odds of finding at least one player who could develop into a starter.

In reality, though, they're fighting against tradition. Looking back over the past 10 years of fifth-round picks by every NFL team doesn't exactly reveal a lot of success. There are some familiar names -- Sherman, Chancellor, Riley Cooper, Chris Clemons (the defensive back), Rob Ninkovich, and Brent Celek, for example -- but the majority of the picks turned into marginal players at best or were out of the league within a year or two.

The Jaguars haven't had much success with players selected in rounds 4-7 over the past decade, either. They hit on three in 2004 -- receiver Ernest Wilford (fourth), kicker Josh Scobee (fifth) and defensive end Bobby McCray (seventh) -- but since then only five players taken in those round became significant contributors: safety Gerald Sensabaugh (fifth round in 2005), guard Uche Nwaneri (fifth round in 2007), running back Rashad Jennings (seventh round in 2009), receiver Mike Thomas (fourth round in 2009) and receiver Cecil Shorts (fourth round in 2011).

It's too early to tell if any of the players taken in rounds 4-7 the past two seasons will become significant contributors, but it appears the team hit on receiver Ace Sanders (fourth round in 2013).

Bradley said the Jaguars will try to find players in those rounds that fit a specific role. Sanders, for example, was drafted to be the team's punt returner. It's the same approach they used in free agency with linebacker Dekoda Watson, a special teams standout who played situationally on defense with Tampa Bay. The Jaguars project him as a strongside linebacker on first and second downs and a leo on third down.

"For us he was intriguing. We have a spot for him," Bradley said. "We know exactly where we want to play him. That's what can happen [in] the fifth, sixth round. Hey, we really like this guy. We have a spot that he can come in and do some good things."

Find enough of those guys on the third day and Bradley will consider the draft a success.

RTC: Combine recaps

February, 27, 2014
2/27/14
8:30
AM ET
Now that the NFL combine has finished, it's time to take stock of which players helped and hurt themselves with their performance in Indianapolis.

ESPN draft analysts Mel Kiper Jr. and Todd McShay broke things down , with Kiper concentrating on the defensive players and McShay the offensive players.

Some risers: running back Jerick McKinnon, quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo, defensive tackle Aaron Donald and Terrence Brooks.

Some fallers: offensive tackle Cyrus Kouandjio, receiver Jarvis Landry, defensive tackle Timmy Jernigan and linebacker Michael Sam.

Here are some additional pieces of Jaguars-related content from around the Web in our Reading the Coverage feature:

ESPN's Bill Polian also gave a list of the players who impressed him the most . Among those on it are quarterback Johnny Manziel, offensive tackle Taylor Lewan, linebacker Khalil Mack and cornerback Lamarcus Joyner. (Insider content)

NFL.com's Gil Brandt adds his list of nine combine standouts, including receiver Sammy Watkins and tight end Eric Ebron.

NFL.com's Bucky Brooks updates his Big Board after the combine. Watkins and Mack were among the players who made the bigger jumps.

NFLDraftScout.com's Dane Brugler updates his top 50 draft board as well.

The Florida Times-Union's Vito Stellino writes about the debate surrounding Manziel in the wake of Ron Jaworski's comments that he wouldn't draft Manziel in the first three rounds.

Multiple reports indicate that Philadelphia is close to signing receiver Riley Cooper, a player the Jaguars could have targeted in free agency, to a multiyear deal and receiver Jeremy Maclin to a one-year deal.

Former Jaguars defensive tackle Marcus Stroud is bringing a gospel festival to Metropolitan Park in March, writes the T-U's Tom Szaroleta.

Free-agency series: Wide receivers

February, 26, 2014
2/26/14
12:00
PM ET
Here is the third of a 10-part series breaking down the Jaguars’ free-agency needs, position by position:

Wide receivers

Who’s on the roster: Justin Blackmon, Mike Brown, Chad Bumphis, Jeremy Ebert, Stephen Burton, Taylor Price, Denard Robinson, Jabin Sambrano, Ace Sanders, Cecil Shorts, Kerry Taylor, Lamaar Thomas and Stephen Williams.

Blackmon
Blackmon
Analysis: This position group is solid provided Blackmon is on the field. However, nobody knows when, or if, he’ll get back on the field. He is eligible to apply for reinstatement from his indefinite suspension for violating the league’s substance abuse policy just before the 2014 season begins. Even if he’s reinstated, there’s no guarantee he’ll avoid another suspension. He is clearly the Jaguars’ best receiver, catching 29 passes for 415 yards in the four games in which he played in 2013. Shorts has played well the past two seasons (121 catches for 1,756 yards), though he has missed five games because of injuries and missed the final three games of this past season and went on IR with a sports hernia. He’s not a No. 1 receiver, though, and had some trouble when he was thrust into that role when Blackmon was suspended. Taylor came on at the end of the season and is intriguing as a No. 4/5 receiver. Brown and Sanders, who caught 51 passes last season as a rookie, are dependable slot receivers. In addition to Shorts, Burton, Ebert, Price and Williams finished the season on injured reserve. Bumphis and Sambrano are on the practice squad. Price’s contract expires next month and he’ll be an unrestricted free agent.

NFL free agents of interest: Hakeem Nicks, Eric Decker, Riley Cooper, Brandon Tate and Golden Tate.

Need meter: 5. The Jaguars could get by without adding a receiver in free agency, because it’s likely they’ll draft at least one. The position group needs an upgrade at the top end, but to get a big-time player the Jaguars will have to spend big-time money, and it doesn’t seem likely they’ll do that on a receiver. Regardless of whether it’s a free agent or a draft pick, it’s likely to be a bigger, more physical receiver, because that’s one thing the Jaguars lack. Burton (6-foot-1, 224 pounds) fits the description, but has just 15 catches in three seasons and battled a concussion much of last season.

Observations and thoughts out of the Jaguars’ 31-24 Week 3 preseason loss to the Philadelphia Eagles on Saturday night:
  • The Justin Blackmon-Cecil Shorts receiving duo produced five catches for 70 yards playing with their backup quarterback, Chad Henne. The two looked smooth and efficient, though each had a play that rated as a drop.
  • Jacksonville’s blockers gave up seven sacks, four of them coming against Henne. That’s simply too much pressure and it’s creates too much risk of injury back there while Blaine Gabbert is already out with a thumb injury.
  • I liked the one-play, 63-yard touchdown drive after an interception. That sudden change in possession was thanks to rookie corner Dwayne Gratz’s pick -- followed by sudden change on the scoreboard thanks to running back Jordan Todman’s cut back touchdown run. But the Jaguars had just one first-half drive with more than one first down -- the opening 12-play touchdown drive.
  • Has Todman dented Justin Forsett’s status or security? Forsett injured a toe early in camp and hasn’t been seen in game action. Todman has done some good work and had an eight carry, 105-yard game with the 63-yard TD. Denard Robinson averaged 4.7 yards a carry on seven runs.
  • The Jaguars were 45 percent on third- and fourth-down conversions while holding Philly to 36 percent.
  • Linebacker Paul Posluszny and rookie strong safety Jonathan Cyprien both bit on bad play-action fake where it was not at all believable that Michael Vick was handing off to LeSean McCoy. But the early movement of Poz and Cyprien helped create the play and the space where Vick found Riley Cooper for a 9-yard scoring catch.
  • Chip Kelly’s offense seeks to maximize plays run. But they ran 70 in this game to the Jaguars’ 73. One big difference, however, was average gain per pass play, where the Eagles posted a 7.8 to the Jaguars 3.7.
  • Philadelphia gained 189 yards on kick and punt returns, meaning the Eagles had an average drive start of their own 38-yard line, 14 yards better than Jacksonville’s average start.
  • Tight end Allen Reisner made a nice 8-yard touchdown catch and his game play certainly indicates he’s going to make this team as a tight end behind Marcedes Lewis.
  • We had an Andre Branch sighting. The defensive end knifed inside and snuck by guard Evan Mathis who was preoccupied on combo block on the outside. Center Jason Kelce passed off defensive tackle Sen’Derrick Marks, but it was too late for Kelce not to whiff on Branch storming up the middle.

SPONSORED HEADLINES