The Jags were a lowly 2-14 in 2012 with only a few highlights. When they were able to celebrate, it wasn’t on defense.
Jacksonville totaled only 20 sacks last season, a stat good enough for last in the NFL.
That’s probably why ESPN.com’s Mel Kiper Jr. picked Damontre Moore for the Jaguars in his first mock of the season. Moore comes out of Texas A&M, and he's rated as the nation’s top defensive end—according to Scouts Inc.
Against the pass, Moore doesn’t seem to be one dimensional. He has speed to beat the tackle around the corner, but he uses his swim move effectively as well.
Moore runs a 4.6 in the 40-yard dash and will have the ability to chase down some of the NFL’s most elusive quarterbacks. If the Jags want to keep up with Andrew Luck of the Colts or Matt Schaub of the Texans, they’ll need more defensive pressure up front to disrupt Luck and Schaub's passing lanes.
Luck is prone to throw a lot of interceptions, but he passes for yards in chunks and isn’t afraid to take chances. Like most quarterbacks, Luck gets flustered when pressured, especially up the middle. Moore’s presence in two games against Luck may be enough to push Jacksonville over the top in at least one of them.
He was able to make a key sack on Alabama’s A.J. McCarron in the Aggies 29-24 upset of the Tide this past season. As McCarron rolled out from a play action, Moore was able to keep him at bay with his speed and long arm and bring him down for the sack.
His quickness is what will help him in the NFL, but he’ll have to get faster at his first step if he wants to be an effective pass-rusher.
Against The Run
Jacksonville’s defense was bad in 2012. Not only were the dead last in interceptions, they were 30th against the run.
The Jags allowed 141 yards per game and over 2,200 yards on the ground for the season.
With Moore, Jacksonville will also get a player who is ambidextrous. He knows how to take away passing lanes with his long arms and uses those lengthy branches to wrap running backs up as well.
He is a much better pass-rusher as opposed to attacking the run, but uses his athletic ability and range to wrap runners up.
In watching Moore play against Alabama, I noticed he’ll quickly extricate himself from his blocker and follow the play down the field. He plays until the final whistle and doesn’t give up if the play seems to be out of his range.
The Jags are in need of help is so many areas, like quarterback and cornerback. There is no need for Jacksonville to over-reach and select a quarterback with the second pick if they aren’t in love with him.
There is a better chance of them finding a short-term fix via free agency instead of the draft.
They should stick with picking a player who can help them right away. The Jags should select Moore to help re-build their defense.
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