The Jacksonville Jaguars have made their first draft addition to the defensive line room in 2021, selecting USC defensive lineman Jay Tufele with the No. 106 overall.
Tufele is a solid scheme fit with the Jaguars thanks to his size, versatility, and strength at the point of attack. He played mostly three-technique for USC, but his best traits are currently as a run-stopper. My pre-draft scouting report on Tufele can be found below.
"A dominating run defender at three-technique, Jay Tufele showed off the balance and explosion to have serious flashes as a pass-rusher as well. He isn't quite yet a well-rounded player, but the traits are there for him to be a three-down interior defensive lineman."
This isn't the first time Urban Meyer has shown interest in Tufele, either. Tufele was a four-star defensive tackle recruit in 2017 (No. 3 ranked defensive tackle), but he was also pursued hard by Ohio State and Buckeyes defensive line coach Larry Johnson.
Tufele was a Freshman All-American and Second-Team All-Pac 12 as a redshirt freshman in 2018, recording 23 tackles, 4.5 tackles for loss and three sacks in 12 games and five starts.
Tufele once again earned All-Pac 12 honors in 2019, this time on the first team after a season in which he recorded 42 tackles, 6.5 tackles for loss, and one pass deflection as a redshirt sophomore.
Tufele fits into a Jaguars defense that is transitioning to a 3-4 hybrid scheme and will ask for its defensive linemen to be able to stop the run from multiple alignments. Tufele will likely fit into the role the Jaguars had in mind for Tyson Alualu, who agreed to terms with the Jaguars in March but ended up re-signing with the Pittsburgh Steelers instea.d