How Telvin Smith Fits with the Jacksonville Jaguars

Giancarlo Ferrari-KingFeatured ColumnistMay 10, 2014

CLEMSON, SC - OCTOBER 19:  Telvin Smith #22 of the Florida State Seminoles during their game at Memorial Stadium on October 19, 2013 in Clemson, South Carolina.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

The Jacksonville Jaguars used a fifth-round pick on Florida State linebacker Telvin Smith.

Smith comes to Jacksonville at a time when the team has a big void it must fill at the weak-side linebacker position.

Most mocks had the Jaguars taking a linebacker at some point in the draft ever since Russell Allen suffered a career-ending injury toward the end of the 2013 season.

Checking him out from a measurables point of view, the Florida State linebacker is listed at 6'3", 218 pounds. Despite having efficient height, Smith has a feeble frame that he must find a way to beef up over the next couple of months.

Smith's best fit in this defense is going to be playing as a weak-side linebacker. His speed and instincts will make him a Day 1 contributor both in base packages and also in nickel situations.

At this year's combine, Smith showed off all of the attributes you love to see out of a linebacker in today's NFL. Posting a 4.52-second 40-yard dash help set him apart from most of the other 4-3 linebackers in the draft.

The concern with Smith isn't what he can do on the field. It's that, according to Jay Glazer of Fox Sports, he failed his drug test at the combine.

Failed drug tests, regardless of how it happened, are definitely cause for concern.

But that concern wasn't enough to keep Jaguars general manager David Caldwell away from the in-state linebacker.

Vito Stellino of tweeted that Caldwell already informed Smith that he expects a lot out of him this season.

A failed drug test isn't the end of the world for a prospect anymore. Like the United States, the National Football League has taken a more liberal stance when it comes to marijuana use.

If you recall, earlier this year Jane McManus of pointed out that commissioner Roger Goodell wouldn't rule out the possibility of players using medical marijuana for injuries sometime in the future.

At the end of the day, you have to put your trust in what this regime felt about Smith, despite his issues at the combine.

The Jags wanted a guy who could instantly become a staple of their defense, and they needed to fill a hole at linebacker. Smith is exactly that type of player, and his experience coming from a championship-caliber program makes him a Day 1 starter.

His tape overflows with qualities you'd want from a starting weak-side linebacker. Over his four years at Florida State, Smith was dominant, producing 214 total tackles, 29 tackles for loss and seven sacks.

He just seems to have a great sense for what's going on around him at all times. Those types of players are who usually have long, productive careers at the next level.

Figuring out a way to bulk up his slender frame and staying out of trouble are the only two factors that could hurt Smith as a pro.

But if he can get a handle on both of those issues, the Jaguars may have found themselves one of the most productive linebackers in the entire 2014 class, and a guy who can suit up right away and help this defense improve.


All CFB stats and information courtesy of, unless noted otherwise. 

All NFL stats and combine information via, unless noted otherwise.