The Jaguars move in the opening hour of Saturday’s NFL Draft to acquire defensive end Derrick Harvey has drawn both praise and criticism from media and fans alike all across the nation, even earning a nomination in an ESPN poll about it being one of the most questionable selections in the draft.
With all the movement in the first day of the draft, it’s really difficult to determine which selections could be considered a reach and which were great value. The Jaguars are at the center of the controversy as they jumped 18 places in the draft to select the former University of Florida defensive end.
"There are a lot of different ways this afternoon could've unfolded," Jaguars coach Jack Del Rio said. "We brought in an aggressive mentality today."
The first question is, did they need to move all the way up to pick number eight? The easy answer is probably not, but you never know. Cincinnati ended up selecting ninth, and it was a possibility that they could’ve picked Harvey. New England moved from seventh to tenth overall, and although Harvey could’ve fit in there, it’s not likely that they would’ve been in the market for his services. Buffalo sat in the 11th slot and they wouldn’t have selected Harvey due to their needs elsewhere and their current depth at defensive end. Pick number 12 was Denver’s, and they chose a Gator defensive end in the first-round a year ago with Jarvis Moss, it’s likely that they wouldn’t have been in the Harvey sweepstakes. At 13, Carolina was said to be very interested in Harvey’s services, and he likely wouldn’t have dropped any further than their pick. It’s possible that the Jaguars could’ve grabbed their guy at picks 9-12, but then the possibility of Carolina trading up would’ve been more evident.
The next question is about how the compensation equated. The Jaguars gave up their first-round pick (#26 overall- value of 700 points), both third-round picks (#71- 235 points, #89- 145 points), and their fourth-round pick (#125- 47 points) for a total value of 1195 points. The eighth overall pick in the draft is worth 1400 points. Normally discrepancies in trade value (on the chart) are roughly 10-20 points difference, but almost never is there a better than 200 point discrepancy. The deal the Jaguars struck was so good that it even surprised their front office—
This wasn't one we envisioned," Jacksonville coach Jack Del Rio said. "We didn't think we had enough ammo to get into the top 10. We weren't going to give up our whole draft. We think (Harvey) is a perfect fit for us. It makes sense for us."
So was this a good move for Jacksonville? On paper it sure seems like it. They filled a desperate need with a top of the line pass rusher who the team thought was far out of their reach, and all they gave up was a pair of third-round picks, and a fourth. General manager James “Shack” Harris spoke about the minimal impact of what his team relinquished--
"With our roster, we're not sure they [third-round picks] could make the team,"