A new era has officially begun for the Jacksonville Jaguars. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has announced the name of a potential franchise-changing quarterback for the embattled team with the selection of Clemson Tigers quarterback Trevor Lawrence with the No. 1 overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft.
He is the Jaguars' first pick so far in this year's draft, in which they own 10 picks overall in capital.
In a draft season that has seen a quarterback carousel and debate around one of the deepest quarterback classes in years, there has been little to no drama concerning Lawrence and the Jaguars. It has been long assumed the Jags would select Lawrence—ever since the club unofficially received the No. 1 pick during Week 16 of the 2020 season—and even longer assumed Lawrence would be the No. 1 pick no matter what.
Considered the most sure-thing prospect since Andrew Luck, Lawrence was the 2020 Heisman Trophy runner-up and won a National Championship as a freshman, during which he diced up Nick Saban’s defense and the Alabama Crimson Tide. Lawrence has thrown for over 10,000 yards in his three-year career under Clemson Head Coach Dabo Swinney, and went 34-2 as a starter.
While Meyer and General Manager Trent Baalke were careful to not officially name Lawrence the pick before sending the card in tonight, the two have both referenced his skill set and impressive presence leading up to the draft.
Baalke, when asked what he’d learned about Lawrence during this draft evaluation process, he answered, “the easiest way to answer that is [there are] no negatives. [With] all the research we’ve done, you’re always looking for the stars to align when you’re looking at prospects, whether that be from a physical, mental, character aspect, whatever the case may be. With his situation, like many others in this draft, the stars all align and that’s what you’re looking for.”
After attending Lawrence’s Pro Day back in February, Meyer gushed about the prospect's potential.
“We had high expectations going into it, like really high. I’ve seen him throw before. I really wanted [Offensive Coordinator] Darrell Bevell and [Passing Game Coordinator] Brian Schottenheimer to witness it. Watching a guy throw, especially throw, on video tape, it’s not the same. I made the comment you want to hear it leave his hand, listen to it go by you, and to me, I don’t know how you evaluate a quarterback without doing that. So, I thought he did great. We’ve had a couple Zoom calls with him and he’s been great, and we like where we’re at with him.”
Jaguars fans have embraced Lawrence even before Goodell called his name, even purchasing gifts for he and his new wife Marissa off of their wedding registry. The gift drive turned into a charity drive to donate to Lawrence’s charity of choice. The viral fundraiser totaled over $54,000 when all was said and down, thanks in large part to a donation from Lawrence himself. At the time, the quarterback tweeted: “We really appreciate the wedding gifts and donations for charities of our choice! In addition to the donations, Marissa and I will also be donating $20K to charities in Jacksonville. Thanks again, we hope to be a part of your community soon.”
The future star has also already signed endorsement deals with Gatorade, Adidas, Bose, and Blockfolio.
Lawrence is the first real shot the Jaguars have at a potential franchise quarterback in its entire—albeit young—club history. It’s been what has alluded the team, as Owner Shad Khan was quick to point out in January. The young slinger will look to lift the team from a 1-15 season and get them back to the playoffs for the first time since 2017.